• Welterweight

Pacquiao unlikely to fight April warm-up

ESPN staff
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Manny Pacquiao hugs trainer Freddie Roach and the pair could be targetting a September return to the ring © PA Photos
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One of Manny Pacquiao's business partners, Rex Salud, has added his weight to a September return for the Filipino welterweight.

Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum originally indicated that the multi-weight world champion was looking at a late summer fight, possibly against Juan Manuel Marquez once more.

Following his brutal knockout at the hands of Marquez in December, Pacquiao's boxing licence was suspended for 120 days by the Nevada Boxing Commission.

But reports of a warm-up bout in Las Vegas in late April were denied by Salud, although he did not entirely rule out Pacquiao fighting elsewhere.

If Pacquiao does choose a warm-up ahead of a fifth fight with Marquez, Salud also wants it to be against an opponent who will effectively sharpen his friend's performance.

"They must find a better warm-up opponent for Manny," Salud is quoted as saying in the Manila Times. "Manny must regain first his old deadly form before looking for a September fight against Marquez."

On the reports of an April fight he added: "That's a bright idea by Top Rank chief Bob Arum, but Pacquiao can't fight in Las Vegas in April - maybe, I guess, somewhere else."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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