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Tuesday, March 9, 2010


“Fighter of the Decade” and pound-for-pound superstar Manny Pacquiao is so eager to get on with his WBC title defense against former champion Joshua Clottey at the fabulous Dallas Cowboys $1.2 billion state-of-the-art stadium that adviser Michael Koncz says “too bad the fight is not tomorrow.”

Pacquiao and some 40,000 fight fans who are expected to kick-start Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ stadium into the mainstream of big-time boxing and what Top Rank promoter Bob Arum believes will become the “Mecca of boxing in this centur will have to wait until Sunday, Manila Time, to get “The Event” underway.

Koncz who appeared to feel a little more relaxed after attending to the needs of Pacquiao and his wife Jinkee and the room assignments of an entourage of some 160 people who were ferried aboard a specially chartered “Air Pacquiao” jet from Los Angeles to Dallas told us that “everything is going fabulous. Manny had a media workout where there was an overwhelming turnout.”

He said Pacquiao “is in fine shape and Freddie (Roach) had to pull him back in training but he went jogging and is looking really good.” Koncz said Pacquiao is “enjoying himself in Texas and the people are very hospitable.

However, Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach has shown a little concern over whether Clottey, the big, strong challenger from Ghana will be as hospitable in the ring as he is friendly and respectful outside.

Although he is confident they have studied Clottey and know how to capitalize on his flaws Roach is concerned about the Ghana fighter’s penchant to use his head when he fights on the inside.

Roach noted that “sometimes he (Clottey) uses his head and if you fall into the pocket with him, his best punch is an uppercut and his second best punch is a head-butt.”

To Roach there’s an obvious answer. ”We are going to fight him at a distance and not stand in front of him” he says, pointing out that “if you stand in front of him you’re an idiot. We are not going to do that. He’s not going to be able to find us.”

Conditioning guru Alex Ariza said earlier that Pacquiao’s bothersome left leg had healed completely and there was no cause for concern which means that the Pacquiao will use his incredible speed, quick in and out and lateral movements to the full and pepper Clottey with punches from all angles.

The Pacquiao-Clottey fight card will be carried on a “live” basis on a number of pay-per-view outlets and on television by Solar Sports including the “Mecca of Philippine sports and entertainment – the Araneta Coliseum where huge, four-sided screens provide the ambiance of almost being at ringside in Dallas.

The fights will also be carried in all Robinson, SM and Rockwell Cinemas and numerous other venues, restaurants, bars and clubs around the country. Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim will also provide “live” telecasts in venues in each of the congressional districts in Manila, free to the public.

Author: Ronnie Nathanielsz

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