MACAU – Seldom does Manny Pacquiao make public how confident he is for an upcoming fight.
But against undefeated Chris Algieri, the 35-year-old boxing great is certain he’s more than ready to face his taller challenger and defend his world welterweight title.
“One hundred percent,” said Pacquiao without batting an eyelash when asked about his level of confidence going into 12-round fight shortly at the end of his workout Thursday afternoon at The Venetian that formally wrapped up his training camp.
“I have that fire in my eyes,” he added.
It’s how the way training camp went – which lasted for almost two months - that gives the eight-time world division champion that inner calm ahead of his fight against a challenger who was hardly heard of until he shocked the boxing world middle of this year when he scored a split decision over fancied Ruslan Provodnikov and annexed the world junior welterweight championship.
“I feel so happy because we’re almost finished with the hard work in training,” said Pacquiao, who represents the province of Sarangani in Congress. “This is one of the best camps I ever had just like in my early days.”
At the same time, Pacquiao isn’t scoffing at the power of the 5-foot-10 Algieri, who only had eight knockouts to show in 20 pro fights.
“I don’t want to underestimate my opponent,” he said of the 30-year-old New Yorker. “I don’t want to get careless, but the fire and aggressiveness will be there.”
Unlike Algieri who is reportedly having a hard time meeting the catch weight of 144 lbs., Pacquiao had the luxury of eating everything as he is very much underweight for Sunday’s fight, so much so that he’ll no longer go to the gym in the next two days and will just undergo some light running to keep in shape.
The waiting game now begins.
“Ready na tayo. Hinihintay na lang natin `yung day ng fight,” said the Pacman.
Watch excerpts from the press conference held on Wednesday night: