Pacquiao steps up preparation for Jeff Horn fight
MANNY Pacquiao spent three hours in the gym on Tuesday afternoon revving up his 38-year-old engine as he plans to roar over the top of Jeff Horn at Suncorp Stadium on July 2.
As Horn flew to Sydney to film a TV project, Pacquiao showed he has a special project of his own as he aims to score his first knockout win since stopping Miguel Cotto in 2009.
The all-time boxing great took a break from work in the Philippines senate to go through a 15-round training session at the upscale Elorde Gym inside the Mall of Asia shopping complex in Manila.
According to the Sports Interactive Network of the Philippines, Pacquiao did five rounds on the punching mitts, followed by two rounds on the heavy bag and two more on the double end ball before turning the speed ball into a blur for another two rounds.
He then finished off with another two rounds of shadow boxing and two of skipping and 10 minutes of stomach exercises.
His workout also contained five-minutes of prayers.
Pacquiao started the day with a 45-minute run inside Manila's Forbes Park compound.
"Great to be back in the gym," he tweeted.
Pacquiao has not fought since last November when he regained the World Boxing Organization welterweight title with a 12-round decision over California's Jessie Vargas in Las Vegas. He had first won the WBO title by halting Cotto in the same city eight years earlier.
The world champ was put through his paces on Tuesday by assistant trainers Buboy Fernandez and Nonoy Neri. His American coach Freddie Roach is expected in Manila shortly.
Pacquiao said while he is still shaking off the ring rust the workout was a good start to the serious business of fighting Horn before an expected crowd of 55,000 in Brisbane.
"Well, I'm glad to be back," the eight-division world champ told reporters covering the session at the air-conditioned gym named after the late Filipino boxing great Gabriel "Flash" Elorde.
"Being back in the ring gives me a wonderful feeling. There is extra adrenaline in my body.
"As I have been telling you, I am not taking my opponent for granted.
"We have been very busy in the Senate with committee hearings in the morning and the afternoon session until evening. But now it's a relatively light schedule so I can train seriously for the fight."