WBC NAMES PACQUIAO ‘WORLD BOXER OF THE YEAR’
By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Wed, 17 Dec 2008
The World Boxing Council which is regarded as the premier professional world boxing organization has named Filipino national treasure and ring idol Manny Pacquiao as the “World Boxer of the Year.”
In an exclusive overseas telephone conversation with www.insidesports.ph, Standard Today and Viva Sports from his home in Mexico City, Sulaiman made the announcement which he said was “a gift that we give to Manny of whom we are very proud of as a WBC champion.” He said it was "unanimously decided" by the WBC board of governors to honor Pacquiao for his remarkable achievements this year alone.
With the accolade which was richly deserved following Pacquiao’s smashing 8th round victory over WBC lightweight champion David Diaz and his clinical demolition of Oscar De La Hoya in a 147 pound fight, Sulaiman paid tribute to the greatest Filipino and Asian champion of all-time on his 30th birthday.
Sulaiman said he was very proud when, after beating De La Hoya, he saw the WBC belt being raised which was seen on television “all over the world” and a pay-per-view telecast that passed the 1.4 million mark according to Top Rank promoter Bob Arum who, together with trainer Freddie Roach and Diaz are in General Santos City for Pacquiao’s birthday bash.
When asked about the possibility of Pacquiao remaining at 140 pounds and relinquishing his 135 pound title since he plans fighting Ricky “The Hitman” Hatton on May 2 in Las Vegas and Floyd Mayweather Jr sometime after September should Mayweather decide to come out of retirement , Sulaiman “we do not know because we were told he might have a fight in the Philippines before fighting anybody else.”
Sulaiman said this was told to him recently and that he had s aid the WBC would support the plan if that’s what Pacquiao wanted.
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