EXPECT no more Baguio sightings for Manny Pacquiao whenever he trains for an upcoming fight.
The high-altitude training that had formed part of Pacquiao's preparations in his past three fights has been ditched as the boxing superstar plans to go back to his previous routine of preparing for eight consecutive weeks at the Wild Card gym in Hollywood.
Top Rank’s Bob Arum admitted the Baguio training has not served its purpose in the past three bouts of the Filipino southpaw, including the last one against American Timothy Bradley which Pacquiao lost in a stunning split decision.
"Obviously he has fallen off the last three fights. His conditioning has not been that great,” said Arum, admitting that training in the country’s summer capital obviously caused too many distractions to Pacquiao, who’s also a congressman from the province of Sarangani.
Pacquiao began training in Baguio during his 2009 welterweight title fight against Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto, and had been doing so ever since then with the exception of his match against Joshua Clottey in 2010.
The usual practice is for Pacquiao and trainer Freddie Roach to train at the Shape Up gym inside the Cooyesan Hotel in the mountain hideaway for the first three weeks, before completing the rest of the buildup in the confines of the Wildcard gym.
But the drop in Pacquiao’s form began to show up in his match against Sugar Shane Mosley last year. While he did knock down the former three-division champion and won the bout handily, he failed to put away the 39-year-old native of Pomona, California, who finished the 12-round fight on both feet.
Pacquiao was even more vulnerable in his next fight against long-time nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez, settling for a majority decision.
Bradley then delivered the final blow when he stripped the Filipino hero of his 147lb title belt, and dealt the Filipino his first loss in the last seven years.
“So no more Baguio, training will be exclusive again at the Wild Card gym,” said Arum.