SPARRING  PARTNERS  READY  FOR  PACQUIAO  FURY

[PHOTO AT LEFT - Manny Pacquiao continues his training in a gym in Baguio City under Nonoy Neri. ANDY ZAPATA MANILA, Philippines]

MANILA, SEPTEMBER 29, 2009 (STAR) Manny Pacquiao’s sparring partners, American Shawn Porter and Mexican Urbano Antillon, did not waste time priming themselves up for the beating up ahead.

They flew in from Los Angeles last Sunday but because of the poor weather were forced to spend the day in Manila. They were brought up to Baguio City yesterday.

Barely rested, Porter and Antillon joined Pacquiao at the gym, doing their own thing as the Filipino pound-for-pound champion worked out under Freddie Roach.

“Naghanda na din para hindi masaktan sa bugbugan bukas (They’re getting ready for tomorrow’s beating),” said Team Pacquiao’s Roger Fernandez of the sparring partners.

“Alam nilang mapapalaban sila, eh (They know they’ll be in for some roughing up),” added Fernandez of Porter, undefeated in 10 fights, and Antillon, a veteran of 27 fights.

Pacquiao was getting ready himself for the tougher days ahead, and instead of the normal two hours, he stayed at the gym for close to three hours.

“Ayaw tumigil. Alam mo naman si Manny (He wouldn’t stop. You know Manny),” said Fernandez, adding that Pacquiao worked out so hard as if he did not run in the morning.

Nonoy Neri, the assistant trainer, said Pacquiao is getting along so well, and barely a week up in Baguio has flashed the form you’d normally see him a month into training.

“Lumalabas na ang bilis. Ang power naman nandiyan na (His speed is starting to show and his power has always been there),” said Neri, who also dabbles as Pacquiao’s chef.

“Grabe ang ensayo kanina (It was a tough workout earlier),” added Neri. He said Pacquiao should kick off his sparring sessions with four rounds – two each with Porter and Antillon.

Porter, according to Freddie Roach, will try to imitate Miguel Cotto with his heavy left hooks to the body. Porter, a light-middleweight, can knock out a foe with a single shot to the body.

“I really like him in this camp,” said Roach of the 1997 National Golden Gloves champion in the US. He needed only 18 rounds to win his first 10 fights, with six knockouts coming in the first round.

Antillon is not new to the Pacquiao camp, having been there before. He’s a lightweight with a ring record of 26-1-0 with 19 knockouts, including one over Bobby Pacquiao.

Antillon knocked out the younger Pacquiao with a single body shot in the first round of their scheduled 10-rounder in March last year at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas.

'Ondoy' hits newly repaired Ninoy stadium; costs high By Abac Cordero (The Philippine Star) Updated September 29, 2009 12:00 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Tropical storm “Ondoy” did not spare the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.

Philippine Sports Commission chairman Harry Angping yesterday reported damages to the vast sports complex along Vito Cruz in Manila could reach millions once the full report comes in.

Angping made the rounds of the various facilities of the RMSC the other day, in the aftermath of Ondoy’s fury last Saturday, and saw for himself the extent of damage caused mainly by flooding.

Angping said fortunately no one was hurt.

The Ninoy Aquino Stadium was hardest hit with damage to the flooring. But PSC personnel are trying to patch things up since the NAS is venue to the ongoing Asian Men’s Volleyball Championship.

“We just spent millions for its renovation and now we have to do repairs once again. The Rizal Coliseum was damaged as well, with knee-deep waters covering the basketball court and its ringside section,” said Angping.

Water also forced its way inside the badminton hall as well as the tennis center and the gymnastics venue, which is undergoing renovation.

“People from our engineering department are now preparing a full report on the damage. And if there’s a need for special funding then the Office of the President will be informed,” said the PSC chief.

During yesterday’s flag-raising ceremony at the PSC grounds, he said, “It’s a wake-up call for us not to take nature and the environment for granted. God is sending a strong message that in one move He can destroy us.”


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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