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News  


HORN IS UP AGAINST A FREAK


PhilBoxing.com




GENERAL SANTOS CITY – Australian boxer Jeff Horn should be in his damnedest best come July 2 when he squares off with World Boxing Organization (WBO) Welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao in a premier Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Australia.

Horn is up against a freak.

During the entire training camp, Pacquiao has been a mean fighting machine – relentless and tireless.

Pacquiao’s repertoire has been on flamboyant display, be it on the road during the roadwork or in the gym during the sparring session.

Everyday, since training coach Freddie Roach and conditioning guru Justine Fortune arrived, Pacquiao has been going through a combined 32 grueling rounds of sparring or mitts session, pounding the heavy bag, double-end bag and speed bag, shadow box and skipping rope inside the gym during the afternoon training session.

“My hunger and passion for the sport has never waned. That is why I am training as hard as this. When you train hard, the fight would be easy,” Pacquiao bared.

Pacquiao was scheduled to go on an uphill road run on Saturday morning a few hours before he and his entourage will fly out to Brisbane.

Pacquiao is set to leave Gensan for Brisbane via a chartered flight around 11:30 a.m. Saturday with around 200 people in tow.

Fortune said Pacquiao’s grueling uphill roadwork on a 1.9-kilometer, 42-degrees high Tinoto plateau is more of mental than physical.

Tinoto plateau is the take off point for the adrenalin-pumping paragliding adventure in the region.


Pacman with his sparring partners and local Pinoy boxers during roadwork leading to Pacman Beach Resort in Tinoto, Maasim, Sarangani Province. Photo by Aquiles Z. Zonio

“The road leading up to the paragliding site is steep. Going up there is energy-sapping and is a big mental challenge. His target is to finish the uphill run in 20 minutes,” Fortune said.

From the top, Pacquiao and his team will take the car going back to the main road then to Gensan.

Pacquiao used to go on a high-altitude road run in famous Griffith Park in Los Angeles, California.

“From the foothill up to the Dante’s Peak of Griffith Park, it’s about four miles and Manny can get it in just 35 minutes. Going up to Tinoto plateau is shorter but steeper compared to the Griffith Park,” Fortune bared.

According to Fortune, Pacquiao is now about 95 percent ready for the July 2 title defense of his WBO Welterweight crown.

“He’s a freak. He’s 38 years old but he remains relentless and tireless. The hardwork and work rate of this guy is incomparable. That’s why he is so special,” Fortune said.

There were times when his trainer and conditioning coach had to rein him in to avoid burnout.

“We don’t want him to peak early for the July 2 fight. So, sometimes we have to stop him,” Fortune said.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Aquiles Z. Zonio.


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