Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Roach slows down Pacquiao training

MANILA, Philippines – Coach Freddie Roach is slowing down World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao's training since he may peak too early for his March 13 fight against Ghana's Joshua Clottey.

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum told that with still over a month to go before the fight, Roach had to "slow him [Pacquiao] up" to avoid peaking early for the bout.

Arum said he is impressed with the conditioning of Pacquiao.

He said Pacquiao is "getting rave reviews on his performance in the gym, and everybody is saying they can’t believe how great he’s looking.”

Arum said it seems that Pacquiao “can [even] fight tomorrow”.

Alex Ariza, Pacquiao's conditioning coach, echoed Arum, saying the 7-division boxing champion seems to get better and better in each sparring session.

“He looked the best that I’ve probably seen him. His footwork, speed, power was unreal,” Ariza said in a report by Inside

Sparring mate hits below belt

During his recent sparring session, Pacquiao nearly knocked down his sparring mate Mike Dallas. This was after Dallas, a 23-year-old light welterweight with an 11-0-1 record, reportedly hit him below the belt by accident.

Ariza said coach Freddie Roach was obviously happy with Pacquiao’s performance. The boxing trainer said things are going on as planned.

Ariza said Roach had “a big smile on his face." "He was happy, and when he and Manny are happy, I am happy,” he added

He said Roach will also bring in another sparring partner to challenge Pacquiao’s abilities.

The new sparring mate is Abdullai Amidu, a welterweight from Ghana who is undefeated in 18 fights, with 17 wins coming by way of knockouts.

The Filipino champ has been dominating sessions with his sparring partners as he prepares to defend his crown against Clottey at the Cowboys Stadium in Dallas, Texas on March 13.

He earlier beat up journeyman boxer Bryan Brooks in four rounds.

Roach said Pacquiao followed the game plan well during the four-round sparring session. He also said Brooks was hurt a few times.

“[Pacquiao] did really well. He’s already following the game plan. This was a good sparring partner for Shane Mosley but I don’t think I’m going to bring him back… he got hurt a few times. Manny was too much for him,” he said.


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