MANILA, Philippines — With the way Manny Pacquiao is slowly unleashing his lethal fighting form, it looks like his sparring partners are facing an even harder task of collecting the bounty on his head.
Junior middleweight Glenn Tapia and Michael Medina, along with WBA welterweight titlist Amir Khan of United Kingdom, have admitted to failing to knock Pacquiao out in their sparring sessions despite giving their all against the fighting congressman from Sarangani province.
“I’ve been trying,” Medina, who is eyeing to collect a total of $2,000 offered by Freddie Roach and Pacquiao’s adviser Michael Koncz, was quoted as saying in a report by Mark Vester on Boxing Scene. “It’s not that easy but definitely I want to keep trying and if I can get that thousand dollars it’s going to be great for me.”
“His conditioning, stamina, and speed are great. I think he’s doing very well and his work ethic is just unbelievable,” the 24-year-old Mexican added.
Khan, who has been instrumental in helping sharpen Pacquiao’s speed and defense during the past few days of their training camp in Baguio City, has continued to impress trainer Freddie Roach.
“I am using Amir more to bring Manny’s hand speed back,” Roach said in a separate report on Boxing Scene. “He (Pacquiao) needs to fight at a high pace. Amir is faster than anybody and I want to bring the speed back in Manny.”
Tapia, on the other hand, also shares the same sentiment that Medina had, saying that he doesn’t fail at bringing out his best against Pacquiao on top of the ring.
Back in Hollywood, another fellow boxer is raring to get his hands on Pacquiao, still with the aim of flooring the seven-division champion and collecting the hefty prize money.
“I just got the phone call and I can’t wait to get in there with Manny,” said undefeated middleweight Vanes Martirosyan.
Pacquiao capped his last day of training in Baguio on Thursday with a dazzling display of firepower in sparring, logging 11 furious rounds with Khan, Tapia, and Medina before heading out to Manila to prepare for his trip to the United States this Saturday.
Erickson Beco, Manila Bulletin