TAKING part in a revolutionary tennis tournament is not the only motivation Andy Murray has in coming over to the Philippines next month.
The world's 10th-ranked player is also looking forward to meeting Manny Pacquiao for the first time when he participates in the inaugural leg of the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL) on November 28 to 30 at the Mall of Asia Arena.
IPTL chief operating officer Eric Gottschalk said they sent an invitation to the boxing superstar in the hope of granting Murray's wish.
“It was a special request by Andy,” the IPTL official said on Friday in a lunch with scribes at the Premier Lounge inside the MOA Arena.
“He’s a huge boxing fan,” he added of the Scottish netter, who will banner the Manila Mavericks team that also features Maria Sharapova, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, and Filipino pride Treat Huey, among others. “He requested if it’s possible if we can reach out to him (Pacquiao).”
Gottschalk added that the 27-year-old Murray even joked that he won’t come if Pacquiao won’t.
“For him to be in Manila, he said that is there a chance? That was his first question,” he said. “He wants to play golf and meet Manny.”
“We’re waiting on word,” Gottschalk said on the availability of the world’s only eight-division champion, who stakes he World Boxing Organization welterweight crown against Chis Algieri on November 23 in Macau.
“A lot will depend on his fight a few days beforehand because we know that depending on how the fight goes, he might be a little bit media-shy a couple days afterwards,” he said.
Pacquiao, though, also has a basketball team in Kia to coach in the PBA and wears another hat in Congress as a Sarangani representative.