By CARLO ANOLIN
Manny Pacquiao and Yordenis Ugas met face-to-face for the first time days ahead of their super WBA welterweight title bout at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday, Aug. 21 there.
Pacquiao, clad in tucked-in white polo shirt and black jogger pants, was accompanied by strength and conditioning coach Justin Fortune and trainers Freddie Roach and Buboy Fernandez. All of them were wearing face masks as well.
Prior to the personal gathering, both fighters only attended a virtual press conference hosted by no less than the Premier Boxing Champions.
During the open-air event, the fighting senator once again hinted at his nearing retirement plans but still reconsidered coming back depending on the result against Ugas.
“All I can say it could be or there [will be] more. I mean, I’m turning 43 this coming December but my plan is one at a time,” said Pacquaio, 42, at the Toshiba Plaza in front of the T-Mobile Arena. “Let’s focus on this first and talk about the next fight if there’s another fight.”
“It depends on the result of the fight [against Ugas] but you know, I love doing this, I’m happy doing this and what I’m feeling like is when I was young at an early age of 20. I thought I’m so excited with training camp. It’s still the same, the passion for the sport,” added the only eight-division world boxing champion.”
Before breaking camp in Los Angeles, California, Pacquiao made his final jog at Griffith Park and went to the Wild Card Gym for a short training session.
The 35-year-old Ugas, who owns the super WBA belt, said he’s just as excited and honored to see Pacquiao in person.
“This is going to be a great fight between me and Manny Pacquiao. I’m in great spirits — emotional in a good way. Very excited for Saturday night,” said Ugas, who was all red, his cap and sporting suit on, with the help of a translator.
“I’m so honored to be fighting a legend, someone like Manny Pacquiao who has done so much. When I got to call, it was wonderful for me for to have this opportunity and now I am really looking forward to Saturday night.”