Manny Pacquiao v Lucas Matthysse: Filipino’s career ‘not over’

Pacquiao will fight Matthysse in Kuala Lumpur on July 15 [Romeo Ranoco/Reuters]

via bbc.com – Former world champion Manny Pacquiao says his fight with Lucas Matthysse will not be his last, and he wants to prove his career “is not yet over”.

Pacquiao, 39, faces the 35-year-old WBA world welterweight title holder in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, 15 July.

And the Filipino fighter is already thinking about his boxing legacy.

“I want them to remember me after my career not only as a champion, but as being an inspiration to everyone, being a good person,” he told BBC Sport.

“This is not my last fight. It’s one to prove that I am still there in boxing and that my career is not over yet.”

Argentina’s Matthysse took up the vacant WBA title in January and says Pacquiao has not been the same fighter since he was knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez in 2012.

“Sure, Manny has won so many titles, I only won one title,” he said. “I am not going to give it up. I will die for it if I have to.

“I will defend this title to the death.”

Pacquiao has 59 victories with 38 knockouts in his career – winning world titles at eight weights from flyweight to light middleweight – but has not fought since he lost his WBO welterweight title to Australia’s Jeff Horn last July.

“I keep on fighting because boxing is my passion and I love raising the flag of the Philippines,” he said.

He did, however, rule out the idea of switching to Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) once his boxing career is over.

“I am also a shareholder of one championship (in the MMA), so both sides I have interests in,” added Pacquiao. “I will not enter into it or fight in MMA.”

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