the philippine flag Philippines Fighting Pride MANNY PACQUIAO

August 28, 2007 Tuesday
Antonio Barrera Looks Down at Manny Pacquiao's Punch

Even though the beating he engaged from Manny Pacquiao, Marco Antonio Barrera continues to put down the Filipino sensation’s shattering victory against the Mexican superstar nearly four years ago.

The 33-year-old Antonio Barrera said he does not consider Pacquiao as a real solid puncher in an article that came out over the weekend on Mexican paper Esto.

Although Barrera admits that Pacquiao has probably the fastest pair of hands, the Mexican ranks the General Santos City native lower than bitter fellow citizen Erik Morales and Rocky Juarez in the power-punching department.

Barrera said that Manny Pacquiao is not the greatest puncher that he met. He said that his best asset is the speed of his hands. His fast combinations are the ones that are really doing the damage.

This is the reason why Barrera hired three Japanese slicksters and an amateur fighter to imitate Pacquiao’s blinding combinations.

Barrera said that there are several good quality Mexican sparring partners but he decided to get Japanese fighters because their style is like Pacquiao.

Sendai Tanaka, Barrera’s long-time Japanese trainer has signed up two undefeated Japanese fighters who agreed to work as sparring partners for Barrera.

First to agree is Takahiro Aoh, a 23-year-old southpaw featherweight with a record of 15- 0, eight by knockout.

Filipino sources in Japan contacted by BusinessMirror said Aoh possesses good lateral movement apart from having good timing in shifting his head and body from side to side. But unlike Pacquiao, Aoh is not the type of slugger who will slug it out with his opponent.

Aoh is said to be a good counter-puncher and has good timing with his combinations.

Another Japanese set to join Aoh in Mexico is Yoshimitsu Yashiro, a lanky five-foot-nine southpaw who is unscathed in 18 fights, 10 via knockout.

The 27-year-old Yashiro is said to be a more forceful than Aoh, as disclosed by the source who has been working in Japan for less than a year, receiving a monthly pay of $1,000.

The same source said Barrera may not really mix it up with Pacquiao and will most likely try to outbox the Filipino from a distance.

If you saw Barrera’s last two fights against Rocky Juarez, you will notice Barrera fought like a boxer who just wants to win, and not to thrill the crowd that is typical of a Mexican warrior.

Back in November 2003 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, a heavy underdog Pacquiao defeated Barrera inside 11 rounds.

The win jumpstarted Pacquiao’s rise to the top of the pound-for-pound ladder as it gave him an opportunity to face and beat other superstar of their division, most notably Barrera’s compatriot Erik Morales.

Already guaranteed of an important place in history apart from being financially secured via his multimillion-dollar fight earnings, Barrera insisted that he cannot just end his career without challenging revenge at his Filipino tormentor.

Barrera added that he just cannot end his career without avenging his loss with Pacquiao.

The 28-year-old Manny Pacquiao is currently training at the RWS Gym in Cebu.

This is the first time the feared southpaw banger is holding his training camp in the Philippines in preparation for a major bout.

Ever since he started campaigning in the United States, Pacquiao did most of his preparations at the famed Wild Card Gym in Hollywood, California, under legendary guru Freddie Roach.

A revered trainer among Filipino fighters, Roach, arrived nearly two weeks ago and has since been in-charge of Pacquiao’s Cebu schedule.