MANILA, Philippines — Manny Pacquiao hit Baguio City Sunday afternoon and by next morning, the boxing icon was jogging, sprinting and stretching at Burnham Park watched by awed residents who spread the welcome mat for the boxer who is getting ready for the November 13 faceoff with Antonio Margarito.
Pacquiao’s Canadian adviser Mike Koncz described the morning roadwork as “a full (morning) workout.”
“We began running at 6 a.m. and Manny looked terrific,” said Koncz, who finally heaved a sigh of relief after spending the first six days of training camp with Pacquiao and the entire team in Metro Manila.
There was a sizable crowd at Burnham Park where Pacquiao held his jogging and regular sprints and sit-ups, according to GMA 7 news reporter James Velasquez, activities Pacquiao failed to do when he was still in the lowlands.
Pacquiao will stay in the City of Pines in the next four weeks under the guidance of chief trainer Freddie Roach and conditioning coach Alex Ariza and training assistants Buboy and Roger Fernandez and Nonoy Neri.
The 31-year-old Pacquiao had set up training camp in Baguio at around this same time last year during the run-up to the Miguel Cotto fight.
After his final workout at the Elorde Boxing Gym in Quezon City last Saturday, Pacquiao said he is still far from reaching fighting form although
Roach is convinced that the Filipino remains a hungry and determined fighter.
Roach is so sure that Pacquiao is getting the hang of training that he has scheduled his first sparring session Tuesday against Michael Medina.
“We’ll do three rounds with Medina,” said Roach, citing that another sparmate, Glen Tapia, is still recovering from a bum stomach.
If Roach decides to postpone Pacquiao’s first sparring, it will likely take place Thursday.
Roach intends to rack up 150 rounds of quality sparring for Pacquiao.
Nick Giongco, Manila Bulletin