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Senate face-off

In front of Pacquiao, fighters shake hands.

Rivals Jerwin Ancajas of the Philippines and Puerto Rican champion McJoe Arroyo found themselves in one room yesterday afternoon.

There was no shoving or shouting and other weird antics one would often see whenever boxers who are about to face off prior to their actual encounter.

They had to watch their moves and be polite as they were guests of Sen. Manny Pacquiao, who is promoting their showdown this Saturday night at the Philippine Navy Gymnasium in Taguig.

After all, they were in the company of the country’s leading lawmakers.

“We just shook hands,” said Ancajas, who is the underdog in the scheduled 12-rounder for Arroyo’s World Boxing Organization super-flyweight title match, when told of his brush with Arroyo at the Senate.

Arroyo, who’s been here since Monday morning, acknowledged his challenger’s presence and gamely accepted the offer of a handshake.

But Ancajas warns that was the only time he’ll be civil towards his foe.

“Iba na sa laban,” said Ancajas, who has a 24-1-1 win-loss-draw card with 16 KOs.

The 30-year-old Arroyo, a holder of a 17-0 card with eight KOs, insists the WBO 115-lb strap stays with him.

“I have a job to do and I am confident I will get it done,” said Arroyo, who was joined in the long trip from the capital of San Juan by chief handler Peter Rivera and trainers Anthony Otero and Alex Caraballo.