HALL of Fame trainer Freddie Roach is concerned about the physical condition of eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao, who looked sluggish in a six-round sparring session with unbeaten Jose Ramirez at the Elorde Gym at the Mall of Asia complex on Thursday.
Pacquiao looked fatigued and listless, but worked hard on the punch-mitts, heavy bag and shadow boxing after the sparring.
Ramirez told Manila Standard that Pacquiao appeared tired and taut, while he himself was getting better as the jet-lag, which bothered him in his first sparring session with the Filipino ring icon last Tuesday, began to wear off.
“It was not such a happy day,” said Roach, comparing Pacquiao’s first sparring session against Ramirez. “I think he is getting a little tired. He looked a little flat. The work in the Senate is starting to get to him, so we’ll have to re-arrange his schedule a bit and give him two days off a week instead of one,”
Roach said he recalled he did the same thing in Pacquiao’s preparation for the Miguel Cotto fight, which he won by a 12th round TKO and “it made a big difference.”
“Manny is getting a little bit older,” said Roach, adding that giving him off on Wednesdays and Sundays would make a difference “because of the stuff he’s doing (in the Senate).”
“I told Manny why can’t you give me that every day? If you show me that, fight like that, nobody in the world can beat you,” said Roach, who noted that Ramirez (18-0) is improving daily. “Ramirez is enough and would bring Manny to the best fighter of old so it can’t hurt.”
He said Pacquiao did 10 furious rounds on the mitts on Wednesday and we now “have to give and take a little.”