GMA News Online
Sports
»
Manny Pacquiao

Roach back at Wild Card to fully take over Pacquiao training camp

March 17, 2009 6:50pm

MANILA, Philippines – After missing the early part of training camp, Freddie Roach is expected to fully take over the work out and preparation of Manny Pacquiao for his May 2 fight with Ricky Hatton in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Any day now, Roach will be reporting back at the Wild Card gym in Los Angeles following almost a two-week absence to be with world title prospect Amir Khan in his bout against Mexican great Marco Antonio Barrera in Manchester, England.

Khan beat Barrera via a fifth round technical decision.

In his absence, Filipino trainer Buboy Fernandez, conditioning coach Alex Ariza and former heavyweight champion Michael Moorer tried to hold the fort and set off Pacquiao’s heavy, eight-week training for his first ring appearance for 2009.

But of course, there’s nothing like having back the same man responsible for molding Pacquiao to be the world’s top pound-for-pound fighter that he is known today.

Upon Roach’s return, he also brought along an assurance from the lanky Khan that the British fighter will help get the Filipino ring idol in shape against his countryman.

Khan told Roach before the trainer departed for L.A. that he’ll show up at the Wild Card gym once sparring session for Pacquiao begins.

“I’d like to help Manny because he’s a good friend," said the 2004 Athens Olympics silver medalist.

Khan and Pacquiao had sparred together twice in the past just before their respective big fights.

The native of Manchester, England held a few sparring session with the Filipino just as he was preparing for his mega-welterweight showdown with the legendary Oscar Dela Hoya last year.

The 30-year-old southpaw from General Santos City then returned the compliment when he helped Khan get in shape for his make-or-break encounter with Barrera. A former conqueror of the Mexican Hall of Famer, Pacquiao also gave the Briton a few tips on Barrera’s weaknesses.


Working out again with the boxing star he considers as his new best mate would be a great experience for him, according to Khan.

“The sparring would do me good as well. It would help me to learn much confidence-wise just to spar with him. If I can handle him and spar with him, it's going to take me on to the next level," said the Englishman.

Roach didn’t hide his elation when Khan answered his plea to spar with Pacquiao

“I love using Amir because when Manny can handle his speed, then he's sharp," said the American trainer. “And when you're sharp you can deal with anybody." –GMANews.TV
Go to comments