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PACQUIAO EXPECTS A FORMIDABLE FOE IN THURMAN
By Maloney L. Samaco
Wed, 15 May 2019
World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight "regular" champion Manny Pacquiao is slated to face undefeated WBA "super" champion Keith Thurman on July 20 in Las Vegas to be viewed on Fox Sports Pay-Per-View.
Thurman (29-0, 22 KOs) unified the welterweight division, being the WBA champion since 2015 and was declared Super champion in 2017. He previously held the WBC title from 2017 to 2018.
He is nicknamed "One Time" for his terrifying knockout prowess and possesses one of the strongest punches in the division.
Thurman survived some scary moments against heavy underdog Josesito Lopez to retain his WBA "super" welterweight title on January 26, 2019 at Barclays Center, New York.
The American champion recovering from multiple injuries and 22 months of inactivity, survived the seventh round when he was rocked by a Lopez left hook followed by a straight right.
Earlier in the second, a well-executed counter left hook sent Lopez crashing to the canvas.
Judges Tom Schreck (117-109) and Steve Weisfeld (115-111) both favored Thurman, while judge Don Ackerman saw it a 113-113 draw.
Thurman, who was stripped of his WBC title during his long layoff, retained the WBA version of his crown and will seek for his sixth title defense against Pacquiao.
International matchmaker Sean Gibbons said that Pacquiao (61-7-2, 39 KOs) is expecting a formidable foe in Thurman.
“At his point of his career, I think the senator is absolutely taking one of the biggest challenges in his career for the last few years. He is fighting an undefeated super champion in Keith Thurman who defeated three former world champions — Robert Guerrero, Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter,' Gibbons told The Manila Times.
“I applaud the senator for taking on challenges like this, but these are the fights in America, in the Philippines, and the world that give people the excitement," added Pacquiao’s confidante.
He said that after signing with Al Haymon and the PBC, the senator has a clear play with a mission to fight the best in the division and that’s where they are now.
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