MANILA, Philippines--Manny Pacquiao will start serious training on Thursday in Baguio City for his Nov. 13 showdown with Antonio Margarito for the vacant WBC super welterweight title at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
The world’s pound-for-pound king announced his decision yesterday after his first workout with celebrated trainer Freddie Roach at the Johnny Elorde Gym in Quezon City.
Pacquiao, who is dividing his time training and serving as congressman, said he would drive up to Baguio with his team after attending a session tomorrow.
After going seven rounds on the punch mitts without a break, Roach said Pacquiao performed “pretty good,” although he noted that his prized ward was “pushing his punches a little bit,” which was to be expected from the long layoff.
“He has the game plan already in mind,” said Roach. “He knows the angles we have to use on this guy (Antonio Margarito) and stay away from the right hand and get away from his power.”
Pacquiao said he felt the workout was okay, adding that he was pleased with the size and quality of his sparring partners because “my opponent is big.”
Margarito has a 5-inch height edge and a 6-inch reach advantage over Pacquiao, who is gunning to become the first fighter to win titles in eight different weight divisions.
Roach said he and Pacquiao “went over the game plan” after watching the fight tapes.
“We came up with a conclusion we are going to move, and if the move is adequate, we’ll go with it. But if not, we’ll make an adjustment, make it a little smoother,” the multiawarded trainer said.
Roach arrived Sunday with light middleweight Michael Medina and undefeated welterweight Glen Tapia, two power-punching and aggressive youngsters who worked before Pacquiao arrived at the gym. They watched every move of the “Fighter of the Decade.”
Tapia and Medina were both impressed with Pacquiao’s speed and power, with Medina admitting he’d have to improve on his defense before they start sparring next week.
Roach said he is also bringing in undefeated Vanes Martirosyan, who is scheduled to fight Miguel Cotto on Dec. 4 and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.
Roach was confident they would have “a great camp where the guys will work together and help each other out. We are going to have a great, great November.”