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Smiles off for MP, Rhodes

Rhodes and Pacquiao

by Nick Giongco

Manny Pacquiao plunged into sparring yesterday, going four rounds with undefeated US fighter Lydell Rhodes in his General Santos City training headquarters.

Under the supervision of Freddie Roach, who arrived there on Monday to preside over the preparation, Pacquiao impressed the Hall of Fame trainer in a report relayed to the Bulletin by Canadian Mike Koncz.

Roach and Pacquiao are getting ready for the April 12 rematch with Timothy Bradley at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and they’d be spending the next few weeks mapping out the gameplan needed to exact payback.

Bradley beat Pacquiao on a controversial split decision in June 2012 but rebounded strongly by winning his next two fights against topnotch opposition.

After defeating Pacquiao, Bradley took on Ruslan Provodnikov, survived the Russian’s fierce aggression en route to a well-deserved split verdict.

In his last outing, Bradley outpointed Juan Manuel Marquez, the Mexican counter-puncher who knocked Pacquiao out cold in late-2012.

Pacquiao is coming off a lopsided win over Brandon Rios in Macau.