Manny sets sights on Mayweather’
MACAU: Manny Pacquiao sent unbeaten American Chris Algieri to the canvas six times at the Venetian Hotel’s Cotai Arena on Sunday for an impressive victory that once again heightened interest in a dream fight between the Filipino ring idol and Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Pacquiao, who will turn 36 on December 17, scored a unanimous decision in defending his World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title and handing Algieri his first loss in 21 professional fights.
The judges scored it 119-103, 119-103 and 120-102, all for Pacquiao.
“I did my best,” Pacquiao, who improves his record to 57 wins, 5 defeats and 2 draws record with 38 knockouts, told the packed crowd that included celebrities, among them Hollywood stars Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
“I really came to fight. I’m satisfied although I’m looking for a knockout but it didn’t come,” he said. “I worked really hard during my training and improved my power.”
“He’s perfected his style,” said Algieri. “He’s perfected the art of fighting like Manny Pacquiao. He hurt me once when he buzzed me with a left hook. But that was the only time.”
Algieri holds a master’s degree and has an ambition to become a doctor once his boxing days are over. All week in the build-up, his trainer Tim Lane had been declaring that he would destroy Pacquiao by “master boxing.”
They proved to be hollow words and Pacquiao’s Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach mocked them afterward.
“The master boxer was given a master class by Professor Pacquiao,” Roach said.
He laughed as he told reporters that he had resorted to an unusual tactic to try to get Pacquiao to finish Algieri with a knockout.
“Eleventh round, I said ‘I want you to knock him out’,” Roach said.
“He says ‘In Jesus’s name?’ I said, ‘If that’s what you want me to say?’ he said “Yeah.”
“So I said ‘Knock him out—in Jesus’s name!” Roach said.
“Really I tried everything I could to get that knockout.”
Top Rank Promoter Bob Arum said Pacquiao’s next fights could be early next year in the US against Super WBA World Boxing Council (WBC) light welterweight titleholder Danny Garcia and probably the long-awaited megabout against Mayweather, the WBC welterweight champion.
That fight could be the first billion-dollar bout in boxing history.
“I really want the fight. The fans deserve it,” Pacquiao said afterward, hurling a challenge by imitating a new TV commercial in which he mocks Mayweather.
Algieri did his best to avoid mixing it up with Pacquiao but the Filipino stalked him around the ring, knocking him down once in the second round, twice in the sixth and ninth and once in the 10th.
Pacquiao, winner of a rare eight-weight world division title, brought Algieri down with a left straight in the ninth round. The New Yorker got up at the count of nine.
“I tried to get out of him every round but Manny is really great and the best fighter in the world right now. It’s really an honor to face somebody like him,” Algieri said. “I’m now looking forward to 2015 and my future.”
The absence of a knockout did not disappoint Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach. Pacquiao’s last knockout victory was against Miguel Cotto in 2009.
“He [Manny] did a pretty good job because he won every round convincingly,” Roach, 54, told The Manila Times in a separate interview. “Algieri needs more experience because he’s not on the same level as Pacquiao. He just ran and avoided Manny.”
In other card results, Filipino Jerwin Ancajas (22-1-1 win-loss-draw record whipped African Fadhili Majiha (15-6-4 with 7 KOs) via third round knockout, while China’s Rex Tso (15-0 card with 9 KOs) won by unanimous decision over Indonesian Sabu Espinos (8-2-1 log with 3 KOs).
Kuok Kun Ng of Macau (5-0 with 2 KOs) beat Australian Stephen Attard (4-1-2 with 1 KO) via unanimous decision.
American Jessie Vargas retained the World Boxing Association super lightweight title against challenger Antonio DeMarco of Mexico via unanimous decision, while Vasyl Lomanchenko (3-1 with 1 KO) ripped Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo (51-2 with 33 KOs) via unanimous decision to keep the WBO featherweight belt.
In another main event bout, former two-time Olympic gold medalist and four-time world champion Zou Shiming survived Pacquiao look-alike Kwanpichit Onesongchaigym (27-1-2 log with 12 KOs) to bring his undefeated record to 6-0 with one knockout.