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No more Pac-Horn rematch this year

By: Nick Giongco and AFP

Manny Pacquiao’s Senate schedule doesn’t seem to fit in the boxing calendar of Top Rank, Duco Promotions and Jeff Horn.

Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum told TEMPO yesterday that the proposed Nov. 12 second meeting between Pacquiao and Horn, his Australian conqueror, is dead in the water.

“Manny can’t do the fight this year,” said Arum.

A few weeks back, it seemed that Pacquiao and Horn were on their way to another slugfest in Brisbane, site of their July 2 meeting the youthful Horn won on a controversial decision before more than 51,000 fans.

Pacquiao, who turns 39 in December, recently said there is no confirmation yet on his next fight, adding that he likes to showcase his wares before Filipino fans before calling it quits.

Arum is likewise unsure when exactly Pacquiao is going to resurface.

“We will try for early next year,” he added.

To stage a rematch in Australia, not only are Top Rank and Pacquiao on the same page but likewise Duco Promotions and Horn should also be agreeable.

Duco Promotion was the lead promoter during the July joust in partnership as well with the Queensland State government.

Pacquiao, the eight-division world champion and future Hall of Fame entrant, is neck-deep in his role as a senator, making it quite hard to set up a fight that will not interfere with his duties.

Horn was hoping to get it on with Pacquiao again to settle the issue over the winner of their wild and bruising battle.

Unless the parties find a way to agree on all fronts, Pacquiao will likely sit out the rest of the year.

“We have been advised today that Manny Pacquiao… cannot return to the ring on 12 November as proposed,’’ Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said in a statement.

“I am advised Mr. Pacquiao, who is also a Senator of the Philippines, will have other commitments at that time.’’

She said her government would continue to support Horn’s WBO world welterweight title defense, whoever the challenger is.

The unheralded Australian stunned the boxing world with a unanimous 12-round decision over Pacquiao in Brisbane on July 2, a hotly contested result that triggered an outcry in the Philippines.