GENERAL SANTOS CITY, Philippines — Manny Pacquiao will be gunning for a knockout in his rematch with Timothy Bradley to avoid a controversial decision like the one in their first encounter nearly a year ago when the American boxer was declared the winner.
“Our objective is to knock Bradley out in the early rounds during the fight to avoid another controversial decision,” Pacquiao’s assistant coach and trainer Buboy Fernandez told reporters here Wednesday.
Fernandez said Team Pacquiao was figuring a way to cut a retreating Bradley inside the ring when they meet for a second time in April.
“He (Bradley) loves to run. He doesn’t want to engage as what we saw during their first encounter. We keep on reviewing tapes of his fights with Pacquiao and Ruslan Provodnikov to be able to devise a strategy,” Fernandez said.
Pacquiao himself vowed to restore his killer instinct and to be more aggressive against Bradley in their upcoming second ring date.
Fernandez arrived here late last week to supervise the training of Pacquiao while waiting for the arrival of trainer Freddie Roach scheduled next week.
Pacquiao starts his day at 8 a.m. with a 20-minute jog around the rubberized track of Acharon Memorial Sports Complex here.
“We have observed that many people jog at the sports complex early in the morning. So, our fighting congressman has decided to adjust his schedule to avoid being distracted,” Fernandez said.
After the jogging, Pacquaio performs shadow boxing then abdominal exercises.
His training is not just physical but also mental. After his jogging, shadow boxing and abdominal exercises, he plays chess before going home to take his breakfast.
At around 1 p.m., he goes to his Wild Card Gym for another training session. This time, he does some muscle stretching before doing two rounds of punch mitts with Buboy Fernandez.
During the punch mitts on Tuesday, Pacquiao accidentally hit Fernandez’s jaw with a left upper cut which interrupted the session for a while.
“My knees trembled and I saw some twinkling starts. What happened today will serve as a warning to Bradley,” Fernandez said.
Fernandez asked a member of the Team Pacquiao to take his place for a few minutes while he recovered.
Fernandez said he was amazed that Pacquiao managed to retain about 80 percent of his power, speed and stamina almost three months after the Brandon Rios fight.
“His power, speed and stamina are still there. It’s visible and I could feel it today,” Fernandez said.
The assistant coach and trainer added that Team Pacquiao would implement stricter rules this time to prevent snooping by the other camp and to give Pacquiao utmost focus during jogging and training sessions.
“We are appealing to his friends, fans, including journalists doing coverage to follow the rules. We would be stricter this time compared to his preparation during the Brandon Rios fight,” Fernandez said.
Rules laid down by the Team Pacquiao include, among others, forbidding media interview or the taking of video by anyone during training sessions.
Pacquiao would train here for one month then fly to the United States on March 22 for the final stage of his preparation at the Wild Card Boxing Gym.