Philippines, 12 Dec 2018
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Pacquiao’s training shifts to high gear starting Monday

Manny Pacquao, again, deviated from his planned training regimen on Saturday in preparation for heavier training load starting Monday.

Instead of merely confining to the scheduled light sprint training that day aimed at determining how far he’s gone in improving his leg power, the Filipino boxing icon called members of his training team for a late afternoon to early evening workout.

“Thinking we’ll be having a day-off on Sunday anyway, and that we will be increasing his training load next week, he called us at the last minute to proceed to the gym for a workout,” chief trainer Buboy Fernandez explained.

Pacquiao did the sprinting, alright that day, doing 50 laps of fast-pace running around the 400-meer track of the Acharon Sports Complex.

Buboy revealed that sparring, one of the most important aspects of the build up program, starts Tuesday, exactly one and-a-half months to Pacquiao’s crucial fight with Argentine World Boxing Association welterweight champ.

Manny Pacquiao works on the mitts with Justin Fortune (top) and Buboy Fernandez (above) during his workout Saturday in General Santos City in preparation for his fight against WBA welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse of Argentina scheduled on July 15 in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. Photos by Wendell Alinea.

The now 39-year-old only man in the history of prizefighting to be crowned champion in eight weight divisions, attempts to win another belt by challenging the heavy-punching 147-pound titlist in a 12-round mainer on Juy 15 at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur.

“Ðoon mo makikita kung gaano ka-seryoso at ka-importante ang labang ito kay Manny,” Buboy explained.

Last Friday, the fighting senator, unmindful of the heavy rains that hit General Santos City, where his training camp was moved from Manila, still went on training in order, Buboy stressed, not to disrupt the training program.

“Lahat nga kami, si Manny, members ng coaching staff, pati mga nanonood ng ensayo basang-basa sa lakas ng ulan,” Buboy said chuckling. “Walang umalis para sumilong. Paano ka naman makakatakbo para umiwas sa basa, eh kay Manny mismo, bale wala ang mabasa.”

“We’re all very happy nga. Lalo si Manny nagbi-biro pa habang nagtre-train,” he said. “Happy kaming lahat sa training team kasi kapag happy si Manny, magandang senyales ‘yan.”

Buboy told this writer that starting Monday, the frequency in the preparedness regimen will be increased little by little as the program progresses.

Working the mitts will be raised from the present 10 rounds to 12 or 15 the most depending on how Pacquiao body will respond.

Sparring will probably start with from four to six rounds for the entire week. Sparring sessions are scheduled on Tuesdays, Thursday and Saturdays.

Already in town for sparring are Leonardo Doronio, a lightweight who also did the job when Pacquiao fought and won over Jessie Vargas two years ago, and welterweight Arnel Tinampay.

Former world-ranked 147-pound campaigner George Kambosis was reported to be already in the counrty, but, Buboy could not confirm his arrival.

Click here to view a list of other articles written by Eddie Alinea.

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