DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 22 August) – The country’s first Olympic gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz on Sunday thanked world boxing icon Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao even if Cuba’s Yordenis Ugas defeated him in the World Boxing Association’s welterweight championship via a unanimous decision after 12 rounds.
“Legend ka pa rin para sa amin, Senator Manny Pacquiao. Salamat po!” (You’re still a legend to us, Senator Manny Pacquiao. Thank you!), Diaz posted on her Facebook page.
Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri said Pacquiao may not have brought home the title but he has “once again proved himself a legendary fighter – the best athlete we have ever had, and the world has ever seen. After decades of victories in the ring, he continues to improve and to challenge himself, and to fight with the same sprint and humility he had as an amateur boxer.”
Describing Pacquao as a “mandirigma’ (warrior), House Deputy Minority Leader and Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate said the boxing icon deserves to be congratulated for “gallantly defending his title and his personal and country’s honor till the end despite the stunning loss to Yordenis Ugas.”
“A mandirigma (warrior), he will continue to be the country’s living legend. When he comes back, we hope that Pacman the legislator will now focus his energy in our country’s fight to defeat this grave crisis aggravated by the COVID pandemic, including his crusade to knock out corruption in the government. Padayon, Manny,” said Zarate.
Pacquiao’s loss in Las Vegas “would not diminish the honors he bestowed to our country and the joy he gave to the people,” Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said, adding Pacquiao “will forever be etched in the hearts of Filipinos as our People’s Champ.” (MindaNews)