Doha: Filipino boxing legend Emmanuel “Manny” Dapidran Pacquiao is getting ready to hang his gloves and he definitely wants to do it in style. After all he is turning a new leaf in life.
Manny, 36, who was in Doha for a short visit during the AIBA World Boxing Championships on Thursday, spoke about his career, plans and like his punches, they were quick and spot on.
You intend to retire soon. Why?
Well, I will be standing for Congress and that is a big responsibility.
If you get an opportunity to choose your opponent for that final big fight, who will it be?
I would choose Floyd Mayweather, Amir Khan or Mikey Garcia.
We are told that Khan would be visiting Doha, maybe tomorrow, so will you take that opportunity?
But, I am leaving tonight, so that looks rather tough.
So where do you think your next big fight will be?
I would love to have my next fight here in Qatar, and my team is now working towards that. Whether it will be against Amir Kahn or Floyd Mayweather, I’ll be ready. I would love to have a rematch against Floyd in Qatar! It was a nice surprise to see so many Filipinos here, it kind of felt like a home away from home. It's also great to see the World Championship in this region for the first time. It’s important to reach out to new generations and new places, which is why I have come to Doha to offer my support.
Are you satisfied with the way you career has shaped up so far, with you being the first and only eight-division world champion in the sport?
Yes, of course, I am very happy with the way my career has shaped up over the years. I have travelled and met a lot of people during the course and it has opened new doors for me. I became a Congressman and now I would be standing for Senate.
What according to you is a tougher – boxing or being a politician?
Being a politician and a public servant is different than boxing. And now that I am standing for Senate, I believe I can help more people. Especially, the people in need. The voters can visit my province and see what I have done for my people.
Which is the one biggest fight that you can recall?
Ah! I have had many big fights in my career. Some of these were against Oscar De La Hoya, Miguel Cotto, Juan Manuel Márquez, Ricky Hatton and Floyd Mayweather.