EX-MANAGER  TELLS  MANNY  TO  BE  WARY:  DO NOT TAKE  SOLIS  LIGHTLY

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS, APRIL 13, 2007
(STAR) By Joaquin Henson - Manny Pacquiao’s former business manager Rod Nazario said yesterday the boxing icon can’t afford to take Jorge Solis lightly in their San Antonio bout Saturday night (Sunday morning, Manila time).

Nazario advised Pacquiao to be careful when the fighter showed up to work out in his Parañaque gym before leaving for Los Angeles last month.

"I told Manny to remember he’s the target now," said Nazario. "I reminded him to think about how he was before, when he was taken lightly by Sasakul and Ledwaba. Now, it’s the other way around. No opponent is easy because once you’re in the ring, anything can happen."

Nazario said Pacquiao is Solis’ ticket to fame and fortune.

"No matter what anyone says about Solis’ record, he’s still a dangerous opponent because he has nothing to lose," said Nazario. "He’ll kill himself to beat Manny. It’s a chance of a lifetime for Solis to fight somebody like Manny and you can be sure he’ll do his best to score an upset."

Nazario said from what he observed in watching Solis on tape, the Mexican packs a potent right straight.

"Manny should watch out for it," said Nazario. "The kid’s got a good left-right combination and he’s tall. But Manny won’t be easy to hit because he likes to weave to the left so it will be harder for Solis to land with his right."

Footwork is critical in neutralizing Solis’ offense, added Nazario. Pacquiao anchored his defense in the third Erik Morales fight on footwork, spinning away from reach and countering with punches on the rebound.

Nazario said Pacquiao should dispose of Solis inside six rounds. "Manny’s in shape," he said. "He’s very disciplined when it comes to training. Solis will be lucky to last six rounds."

Although Solis is unbeaten, the quality of his opposition is suspect. His latest victim Fernando Lizarraga had won his last eight fights before facing Solis but the streak was padded with victories over patsies brandishing shameful records of 1-11-1, 1-2-1 and 0-9-1, among others.

In Solis’ only fight against a "name" contender Humberto Soto three years ago, it was declared a no-contest. Solis was cut on the right eyelid by a butt in the first round and when the bout was stopped, Soto was ahead on points.

Despite Solis’ dubious ring history, he’s considered a dangerous foe for Pacquiao because he has everything to gain and nothing to lose. The pressure to win is on Pacquiao, not Solis.

"Manny won’t allow the judges to decide the outcome," said a boxing observer from Manila. "The judges are experienced but two are from Texas and they’re all quite old. You can’t be sure about their vision so Manny should just knock out Solis to avoid any slip-up."

The judges are Larry O’Connell, 68, Gale Van Hoy, 73, and Oren Shellenberger, 67. O’Connell is from England while Van Hoy and Schellenberger are Texans.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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