Pacquiao to consider retirement seriously

MANILA • Eight-time world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao has said he will "think hard" about retiring after his stunning and controversial defeat by unheralded Australian challenger Jeff Horn.

Arriving home in the Philippines a day after losing his World Boxing Organisation welterweight title in a major upset in Brisbane on Sunday, the 38-year-old legend said he was thinking about hanging up his gloves for good.

"I am also considering the opinion of people, the opinion of my family and my body," he told ABS-CBN television on Monday night when asked about retirement.

"I plan to relax first and recover from the pains in my body and then after that, when I have already relaxed, that's when I will think hard about it."

Immediately after the fight, Pacquiao had said he wanted a rematch with Horn.

However his wife, Jinkee, and his trainer, Freddie Roach, had both said that they would advise him to quit boxing, after a phenomenal 22-year professional career in which he won world titles in an unprecedented eight weight divisions.

Pacquiao briefly retired from boxing last year to pursue his long-held political ambitions and was elected as a senator.

He quickly made a successful comeback against American Jessie Vargas in Las Vegas last November, saying he still felt like a youngster.

However, the 29-year-old Horn's ultra-aggressive style proved too much for Pacquiao, with the three judges scoring the fight 117-111, 115-113 and 115-113 to the Australian after 12 rounds.

On Monday, Pacquiao also made disparaging comments about his opponent.

"He's not really good but he's really strong," he said of Horn, as he questioned the decisions of American referee Mark Nelson.

"There is no problem with the style of Jeff Horn if he plays dirty, because there is a referee.

"The problem here is that the referee, I don't know if he did it deliberately or he just did not have experience, he just allowed it and did not even give any warning for how many times.

"It's as if the referee wanted to help my opponent."


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 05, 2017, with the headline 'Pacquiao to consider retirement seriously'. Print Edition | Subscribe