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Manny Pacquiao next fight: Will the COVID-19 pandemic affect Filipino boxer’s timeline of return in July?
Even the biggest sporting events in the world were not spared from the ravages of COVID-19. It is then worth asking if Manny Pacquiao’s intention to set foot in the ring in July would remain unchanged amid the ongoing global pandemic.
Will COVID-19 pandemic delay Manny Pacquiao’s next fight?
The current situation with regards to the COVID-19 outbreak suggests that it is highly inadvisable to conduct any mass gatherings around the world, especially in key cities. Major national and international leagues for football, baseball, the NBA regular season 2019-20, and other sports matches have already been canceled or postponed indefinitely. The Tokyo 2020 Olympics, supposedly happening on July 24 to Aug. 9, have been postponed until summer 2021. All these decisions were made as safety precautions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
It is also important to note the local situation in Saudi Arabia, where the match would most likely take place as repeatedly mentioned by Pacquiao’s team. The total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country rose to 767 on Tuesday, per Gulf News. Pacquiao is also an elected Philippine senator. The country has been hit hard by the virus over the last few weeks with the total confirmed cases now at 552 as of late Tuesday.
An event with Pacquiao on the match card will most certainly invite spectators from all over the world. If the situation does not get any better in the coming months, it might be unwise to force a boxing match.
With all these factors considered, it is not far-fetched for Pacquiao’s camp to ultimately cancel or delay his next match. Since he has not yet decided on his next opponent and a venue has not been secure yet, this decision should not be difficult to make.
Manny Pacquiao eyes July event, Mikey Garcia or Errol Spence for next fight
The prospects for Pacquiao’s next match is already promising. The boxer previously confirmed he plans on fighting in July and hopes to start his training a couple of months before the match. When asked who he fancies on fighting next, he quickly mentioned two names: Errol Spence Jr. or Mikey Garcia.