Pacman leaves Saturday for training in LA

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/07 March) — Boxing icon Manny Pacquiao and his team are set to leave for Los Angeles, California on Saturday to undergo more rigid training for his April 12 rematch with undefeated World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight champion Timothy Bradley in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Restituto “Buboy” Fernandez, Pacquiao’s assistant trainer, said Friday their team will leave the city for Manila through a private jet at around 3 p.m. and will take a direct flight to Los Angeles at 10 p.m. on Saturday.

He said Sarangani Province’s “fighting congressman,” who is on leave from his work at the House of Representatives to prepare for the upcoming fight, will only take a day off to rest and go to church upon arrival.

“After a brief rest, his rigid training camp at the Wild Card Gym will immediately begin,” he told reporters.

Pacquiao started early last month his conditioning workouts and sparring sessions here in preparation for the Bradley fight.

His daily routine includes morning runs at the city sports complex and indoor workouts at his gymnasium in Barangay Calumpang and afternoon sparring sessions at the Wild Card Gym located in the city’s busy commercial district.

The sparring sessions, which included bouts with unbeaten American brawler Lydell Rhodes, were supervised by legendary trainer and coach Freddie Roach.

Earlier this week, Fernandez said they moved Pacquiao’s morning runs at the Pacman gymnasium due to the worsening warm weather.

“He sweats a lot when exposed too long under the sun and that might not be good for him in the long run since he’s also maintaining an ideal weight for the fight,” he said.

On Friday, Pacquiao continued with his scheduled training and workouts as well as sparring sessions with Rhodes at the Wild Card Gym here.

Fernandez said that on Saturday morning, the ring icon will skip his conditioning workouts but will go with several rounds of sparring sessions with Rhodes before leaving for Manila and Los Angeles.

Pacquiao and Bradley will meet anew on April 12 after almost two years to settle their controversial fight in 2012 that ended with the latter taking the WBO welterweight belt.

Bradley won the match via 12-round split decision, which boxing analysts and observers believed should have been given to Pacquiao.

Pacquiao lost his next fight, a fourth faceoff with Mexican nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez, but regained his winning form with a 12-round unanimous win against Brandon Rios in Macau, China in November 2013. (MindaNews)