Paris Olympics

Pacquiao reiterates Olympic desire

Philip Matel

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

Pacquiao reiterates Olympic desire

PACMAN. Manny Pacquiao in action during an exhibition fight.

Wendell Alinea/MP Promotions

'My heart and desire is to claim a gold medal in the Olympics,' says Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao

MANILA, Philippines – Boxing legend Manny Pacquiao doubled down on his commitment to join the Philippine contingent for the Paris Games, saying being an Olympian was his original goal when he entered the sport as a teenager.

“[I’m] waiting for that and I’m excited about it,” Pacquiao said in Filipino during the launch of the Maharlika Pilipinas Volleyball League (MPVA) at the Sheraton Hotel in Pasay on Friday, September 15. 

“From the beginning, I went to Manila to be part of the Philippine team, but I wasn’t picked, I was rejected…because they said I was not good,” boxing’s only eight-division champion added. 

“My heart and desire is to claim a gold medal in the Olympics.”

In August, Philippine Olympic Committee President Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino bared that Pacquiao reached out to inquire about the qualification process. 

According to Tolentino, the 44-year-old is ineligible to participate in the Asian Games, an Olympic qualifier, which capped athletes’ age at 40.

The boxing icon has two options – to make it through the two Olympic boxing qualifiers in early 2024 or clinch one of the four Universality rule spots to be awarded by the International Olympic Committee. 

Pacquiao (62-8-2; 39 KOs), last fought professionally in 2021 before hanging up his gloves to run for the president in 2022.

He has since fought in several exhibition bouts, with one more coming up in early 2024 against muay thai legend Buakaw Banchamek. 

New volleyball league

Pacquiao, the founder of the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL), extended his hand in the volleyball scene as the MPVA is set to hold its inaugural game on October 15. 

There are 10 teams from Metro Manila, Luzon, and Mindanao, set to play in a home-and-away format. 

Following the single round-robin eliminations, the league will stage its playoffs in a best-of-three affair from the quarterfinals through the championship series.

Much like the MPBL, there will be team tie-ups with local government units, with squads featuring a maximum of three ex-professionals and a minimum of three homegrown players.

“We are also planning to launch a men’s league soon and we hope that it would become an institution,” said Pacquiao. 

“We also plan to have grassroots programs, also launching a Junior MPVA,” he added. – 

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!