Philippine president, Malaysian PM at Pacquiao fight ringside
By Edwin G. Espejo
Sun, 15 Jul 2018
KUALA LUMPUR ? Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte is among the very important personalities who will be at the ringside when Manny Pacquiao, a senator in his home country, tries to wrest the World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight crown from Argentinian champion Lucas Mathysse later this morning.
President Duterte arrived her late last night in what his presidential photographer King Rodriguez said is a ?private trip?.
Duterte has reportedly met with Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohammad who will join him at the ringside.
It will be the first time two head of states will be watching a world boxing championship fight. If the heads of state of Papua New Guinea and Singapore will also watch the fight, which was likewise reported, it will be a politically star-studded boxing match.
Seating arrangements at the VIP section was hastily re-organized with some tickets recalled to accommodate the entourage of both Duterte and Mahathir who is expected to arrive minutes ahead of the main event.
The Philippine president has declined requests for interviews, stating his arrival is not an official function but upon the request of Pacquiao.
Although Pacquiao supported former Vice President Jejomar Binay during the 2016 elections, he has maintained his friendship with Duterte and has become one of the president?s staunchest allies at the Philippine Senate.
Duterte also watched Pacquiao?s fight against Thai Fahprakorb Rakkiatgym at the RMC Gym in Davao City.
Duterte is expected to immediately fly back to Manila after the fight.
Click here to view a list of other articles written by Edwin G. Espejo.
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