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    Pacquiao eager to win back faith of Pinoy fans

    Aug 20, 2013

    THE country’s most beloved son Manny Pacquiao is aware his boxing career lost some glitter after a huge letdown in 2012 that saw him fail to win in two big matches.

    “Siyempre natalo tayo sa last fights natin, kailangang mabawi natin `yung trust and confidence sa atin ng tao,” he said.

    It marked the first time in his colorful 17-year career that Pacquiao suffered back-to-back losses – first a split decision at the hands of Timothy Bradley and second, a stunning sixth-round knockout to longtime nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez.

    In both occasions, the eight-time world champion admitted having learned a lot.

    “Ano natutunan? Madami. Halos lahat. Charge to experience na lang,” said Pacquiao, who nonetheless, stressed he has not lost his passion for boxing despite having to devote a growing amount of time to his role as lone representative of Sarangani province in Congress.

    “Kung focus ang pag-u-usapan, kahit ire-review natin `yung last fight ko, focus ako nun,” he pointed out. “Maganda ipinapakita ko. Nangyari lang talaga `yung hindi inaasahan - nasalubong natin `yung suntok ng kalaban.”

    Now that he’s set to make a ring return on November 24 against a hard-punching Brandon Rios in Macau, the 34-year-old southpaw vowed to double his effort in training for the 12-round fight.

    A source told Pacquiao is planning to file a leave of absence at Congress once training camp for the bout begins in General Santos City on the first week of September.

    And this may be the reason why the `Pacman’ has constantly been busy meeting with his legislative staff.

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    “Kailangang pag-handaan ng mabuti. Kailangan natin ng mahabang preparasyon ngayon,” Pacquiao bared.

    “Matinding preparation ang gagawin natin, kailangan 100 percent mentally and physically.”

    This developed as Pacquiao admitted he’s yet to lose hope fighting unbeaten super-welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. even though boxing fans appeared to have already lose interest in seeing the titanic match that has been in the works for four years now.

    The Filipino boxing icon said he’s ready to begin another round of negotiations with Mayweather if the opportunity arises again.

    “Depende sa kanya yun. Willing naman tayo (to fight him). Depende na lang sa kanya kung willing siya,” said Pacquiao. “Kung open na siya makipag negotiate, open naman ako anytime.”

    The one-time world pound-for-pound fighter didn’t hide his disappointment for failing to put the multi-million fight together after all four previous negotiations with Team Mayweather bogged down.

    But he’s not about to put the blame on the 1996 Olympic bronze medalist.

    “Mahirap mag judge, may mga dahilan kasi siya. Hindi natin alam, boksingero naman siya, pero may mga dahilan siya kung bakit ayaw niya tayong labanan o makipag-negotiate sa atin,” he added.

    Asked why he is not giving excuses not to make the fight, Pacquiao replied: “Wala naman akong dahilan (para ayawan yung laban)!”

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