Manny Pacquiao will face Timothy Bradley for a third time in their mouth-watering clash on Saturday night (4am Sunday UK time) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas for the vacant WBO International Welterweight title.
When they met back in 2012, Bradley won a split decision victory in an outstanding fight to win the WBO Welterweight title, a defeat ‘Pacman’ avenged two years later after Bradley had defended his title twice. It promises to be another battle of wits and skill between two well matched fighters over the 12 round distance.
The bout ends Pacquiao’s longest career layoff, after he pocketed $150 million in his unanimous-decision loss to the unbeaten and since retired Floyd Mayweather Jr. last May, and has said he’s expecting this to be his final fight.
“It’s good for me to rest almost one year. I feel happiness, my hunger is like new,” he said after his final workout. The absence was necessitated by surgery, as Pacquiao underwent an operation on his right shoulder to repair a tear suffered in training before the Mayweather fight. He was denied a pain-relieving injection just before the bout, and aggravated the injury in the fourth round, allowing Mayweather to proceed to a convincing triumph in the long-awaited showdown.
That performance disappointed Pacquiao’s countrymen in the Philippines, and he said he’s drawn motivation to shine in what he said could be his final fight before his bid to win election in the Philippines Senate with a May election date nearing. It is a fair motivation, but could his political goals take some edge off the 37-year old future hall of famer, against one of his toughest ever opponents?
imothy Bradley has sounded extremely confident and has enjoyed a great training camp. He comes here on the back of a unanimous decision win over Jessie Vargas and a TKO of Brandon Rios back in November. He knows what it takes to beat Manny Pacquiao and it is unlikely either of them can get the stoppage victory. If Bradley is to get the famous win here, then a win on points is his most realistic chance.