Political plans on hold as Pacquiao fights on

Sports | 11 Jan 2019

Manny Pacquiao played down reports linking him to a bid for the presidency of the Philippines, insisting he remained solely focused on the twilight of his boxing career.

The 40-year-old, already a member of the Philippines Senate, has been repeatedly linked to a future run for the presidency in his country where he remains a hero.

However Pacquiao said he had put any future political aspirations on hold as he prepares to defend his WBA welterweight title against Adrien Broner on January 19 in Las Vegas.

"A lot of people are saying that I can be the next President," Pacquiao said. "But I'm not thinking about that. I don't have plans right now. Whatever path that God gives to me I will fulfill it.

"Being a public servant is different from sports ," he added. "A lot of problems, thinking about how to solve those problems in the country, and also to provide solution to those problems."

Pacquiao, 60-7 with two draws and 39 knockouts in a career that began in 1995, came face to face with old rival Floyd Mayweather while attending an NBA game in Los Angeles.

Mayweather beat Pacquiao in a lucrative 2015 bout before later heading into retirement. Speculation of a possible rematch has continued to rumble. For the time being though Pacquiao insists he is not looking past Broner.

"One at a time," Pacquiao said. "I cannot say about the future until January 19."

However Pacquiao made it clear he is determined to reclaim his status as a serious force in the division. "I want to maintain my name at the top and to show that even at 40 years old I can still give the best of Manny Pacquiao - the speed, the power, everything."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

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