Renowned boxer Manny Pacquiao has announced he’ll be retiring from the ring after a stunning 26-year career. Pacquiao has had an undeniably successful career as a prizefighter, winning titles in an unprecedented eight weight classes. He’s the only boxer to ever achieve such a feat of boxing mastery and finishes out his career with an eye-popping stat card of 62 wins, 8 losses, and 2 draws.
His eighth loss came only recently, in a major bout with Yordenis Ugás in Las Vegas. The welterweight title fight was Pacquiao’s shot at becoming the only boxer to win a title match in four different decades. “It is difficult for me to accept that my time as a boxer is over. Today I am announcing my retirement,” Pacquiao told fans in a heartfelt video posted to his official Facebook page.
“I never thought that this day would come. As I hang up my boxing gloves, I would like to thank the whole world, especially the Filipino people for supporting Manny Pacquiao.”
Pacquiao has had an unparalleled boxing career. He started boxing in 1995, debuting as a scrappy and technically proficient brawler who could hold his own against opponents in multiple weight classes. Pacquiao’s farewell video sees him making special note of two people who were pivotal in propelling him to boxing fame: his manager, Rod Nazario, and his trainer, Freddie Roach.
Nazario’s role in Pacquiao’s career is undeniable: he’s the one who arranged the Filipino boxer’s first American bout. Nazario even introduced Pacquiao to Roach, the coach whom Pacquiao has repeatedly credited with molding him into the fighter who was able to secure titles in eight distinct weight classes.
Pacquiao’s stellar career saw him become one of the most popular boxers in the world. His reputation for precision, speed, and technical proficiency made him a huge draw for crowds, as well as a favorite of old-school fans of boxing. It will be bizarre to see the world of professional boxing without Pacquaio waiting in the wings to challenge another titleholder.
As for what’s next for Pacquiao, he’s had a very successful political career so far. He’s currently a member of the Filipino Senate and has announced a bid for the country’s presidency. His political career so far has been defined by his rivalry with the current Filipino president, Rodrigo Duterte.
Duterte’s six-year term is almost over. The Filipino constitution prevents him from seeking a second term, meaning that Pacquiao is a favorite in the upcoming election, thanks to his high profile. He’s easily one of the most recognizable athletes from the Philippines, and he’s hoping this helps propel him to the highest office in the country.
Duterte, for his own part, will be seeking the office of the vice president alongside his party’s choice for his successor, Christopher Lawrence Go. Political commentators in the country have noted that, should Go win the presidency, it will in effect act as Duterte’s second term. Go could simply resign, handing the reigns of power to Duterte, or Duterte could simply tell Go how to conduct himself.