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Twin mission for Manny in Tokyo


Manny Pacquiao is not only going to Tokyo to lobby for the country’s bid to host the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

A meeting with the Filipino community on Thursday is also on tap in coordination with the Philippine Embassy as Pacquiao is the vice chairman of the House Committee on OFW affairs.

Last month, Pacquiao traveled to Indonesia to meet with Mary Jane Veloso, who is languishing in a Yogyakarta prison for drug trafficking, in the hopes of sparing her life.

After meeting with embassy officials and Filipino OFWs, Pacquiao will devote his time to the country’s quest to host the 2019 FIBA World.

The actual presentation of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) takes place Friday with Pacquiao being added to the high-profile SBP delegation that will try to convince the FIBA that the Philippines deserves the hosting rights.

China is the other country vying for the 2019 edition and is heavily favored to win owing to its track record in hosting large-scale events like the 2008 Olympics, Youth Olympic Games, world gymnastics championships and the world track and field championships that get off the ground in two weeks.

But the Philippines has an X-Factor as it has the most passionate fans in the world outside the US.

Besides, the FIBA likewise took note of the SBP’s superb handling of the 2013 FIBA Asia.

Pacquiao is flying to Tokyo this morning.