Pacquiao: “My Fight Is Not Only for Me”
Writes Joaquin Henson at The Philippine Star:
WBO welterweight champion Rep. Manny Pacquiao couldn’t have said it better.
In the 200-page book “Box: The Face of Boxing” (San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2010), Pacquiao is one of over 150 fighters featured in photographs taken by Holger Keifel and there’s a quote taken directly from him.
Pacquiao, the only man ever to capture eight world titles in eight different weight classes, has two photographs in the book – one a close-up and the other, a half-body pose, shirtless, sporting hand-wraps and wearing boxing shorts with “PACQUIAO’ emblazoned on the waistband. There are also photographs of promoters, trainers, cut-men, boxing TV executives, writers, matchmakers, lawyers, managers, referees, administrators and regulators, publicists and others, including recent Hall of Fame inductee Sylvester Stallone with their quotations.
Pacquiao’s quote summarizes what’s in his heart:”There is bad news all the time in my country. There is not enough food. We have typhoons. There is corruption in the government and too much crime. So many people are suffering and have no hope. Then, I bring them good news and they are happy. I know that millions of people are praying for me and that gives me strength. My fight is not only for me but for my country.”
With that kind of declaration, it’s no wonder that Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated recently described Pacquiao as “an uberpopular congressman in the Philippines who has a potential future as that country’s president.”
No one doubts Pacquiao’s sincerity. When he enters the ring, you know he’s in there to bring honor and glory to the Philippines. Of course, Pacquiao is in it for the money. Boxing is his livelihood, after all, and it was his ticket out of poverty. The sport has given him fame and fortune. And for all his blood, sweat and tears, Pacquiao deserves the good things that have come his way. Pacquiao never forgets to thank God for his blessings – before every fight, he kneels in his corner for a prayer and when it’s all over – win or lose – he gives praise to the Lord.
Pacquiao, 32, reveals in the book that his inspiration is the Filipino people. Perhaps, now, at this stage of his life, money is no longer his primary purpose for fighting. He has earned over $100 Million in his boxing career and when he finally decides to hang up his gloves in two or three years, the amount could reach $200 Million, especially if Floyd Mayweather Jr. steps up to the plate. Another thing is Pacquiao enjoys boxing and the hard work that comes with it. Once the enjoyment is gone, then it may be time to quit.
More than anyone else, Pacquiao will know when to retire and you can bet that he’ll quit when he’s ahead. Pacquiao will want to be remembered as a legend in his own time. He won’t want to end his career only a shadow of his old self. He’ll want to go at his peak like Rocky Marciano and Joe Calzaghe.
Read the full article here.