By NICK GIONGCO
Manny Pacquiao said he is going the extra mile in his April 12 rematch with Timothy Bradley.
After completing two weeks under chief trainer Freddie Roach and comebacking conditioning coach Justin Fortune, Pacquiao said the two key figures in his training camp have been telling him to go down the well.
“Freddie and Justin are asking more from me in this training camp than I have ever given before as as hard as that is to do, I am giving them everything they have asked of me,” said Pacquiao from the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood in a statement released by Top Rank which is staging the second meeting between the Filipino icon and the undefeated puncher from Palm Springs.
Dismissing that he has lost his zest for competition, Pacquiao insists there is still fire burning in his belly.
“My motivation is the same now as it was when I started my boxing career. I love the competition and I love to win. When that stops, so does my professional boxing career. But I don’t see that happening for a long time. Because I am facing Tim Bradley again I am extra motivated for this fight.”
Getting back at Bradley is the ultimate goal and the 35-year-old Pacquiao believes his opportunity to get even is going to finally happen before an estimated sellout crowd at the MGM Grand.
“I may not have won the decision the first time we fought but I know I did not lose that fight. I want the world title he won from me back around my waist. I want to prove I am the better fighter.”
But getting that job done won’t be easy.
“No one has ever defeated Tim Bradley during his professional career. I want to be the first name in his loss column. It will not be easy. Nothing at the world championship level is easy. I still have the hunger and the desire to win and I appreciate Tim Bradley giving me this rematch to prove it. Unfortunately for him, on April 12, I will not be able to repay him that favor with kindness.
Bradley, who is also deep in training, said their upcoming showdown will be a chance to put an exclamation point to his mastery of Pacquiao.
“This is my chance at redemption and I promise I will make the most of it,” said the 30-year-old Bradley.