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Manny Pacquiao’s coach offers $1k reward for sparring partners to floor him and has to hire security to keep fans at bay

FREDDIE ROACH still offers a $1,000 reward for anyone who can floor Manny Pacquiao in sparring… but so far he has kept his money.

And Pacquiao’s adoring fans are so eager to catch a glimpse of their hero in action, trainer Roach has had to hire security to keep them at bay.

Manny Pacquiao with legendary trainer Freddie Roach
Manny Pacquiao sparring in training to fight Errol Spence Jr

The legendary duo are currently preparing for their 37th fight together, now 20 years since their first.

Filipino icon Pacquiao, 42, challenges unbeaten welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr, 31, on August 21 in Las Vegas.

And with his southpaw sparring well underway, Roach continues to promise $1,000 for anyone who can put PacMan down.

But, as has always been the case, the Hall of Fame coach still has the cash in his pocket as he opened about the deal.

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Roach told SunSport: “Manny doesn’t know that!

“I’ve always kept it a secret but every sparring partner I hire, I say, ‘You knock him down, I give you a thousand bucks’.

“And I’ve kept a thousand in my pocket.”

Pacquiao first met Roach in 2001, when he walked into his Wild Card gym as a former flyweight but unknown world champion.


How the two stars stack-up head-to-head


The esteemed cornerman once described the moment as ‘the greatest day of my life’ and launched one of the most successful partnerships of all time.

In the years since, Roach has guided Pacquiao to titles in an unprecedented EIGHT DIVISIONS.

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And the southpaw star has become a global icon due to his charitable and political work outside the boxing ring.

Pacquiao still remains much of the same person Roach met before their first fight together, when they beat Lehlohonolo Ledwaba for the super-bantamweight title.

Little has changed when it comes to speed, explosiveness and dedication to training – but the crowd that follows him has.

Roach said: “There’s a little more people in training camp. People love to see Manny Pacquiao and his entourage is getting a little bigger.

“But then the first day he noticed it was getting a little crowded in the gym, he said, ‘Freddie, can we get rid of some of these people’.

“I said, ‘Yeah, we can. These are all your people, throw them out!’ Manny cut them right in half, so training camp’s getting better as less people are watching.

Fans in the Philippines fill up to watch Manny Pacquiao training in 2016

Media pile in the Wild Card gym to watch Manny Pacquiao training in 2019

“Manny draws a lot of people to this area and so forth but I had to hire security guards and uniformed police officers that have to watch the gate and keep he people away.

“Because it’s a pretty important fight for Manny and he’s doing really well, he’s fighting one of the best guys out there.”

Pacquiao and Roach spent the best part of two years away from each other due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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It saw PacMan sidelined and unable to return having last fought in July 2019, when he beat Keith Thurman, 32.

But it came as no surprise to Roach when his most famous pupil chose undefeated Spence for his comeback fight, putting a smile on the trainer’s face.

He revealed: “I was leaning towards Mikey Garcia, maybe a little smaller, not as strong, but when he did pick Spence I did give him a call and congratulate him.

“I love that Manny picked a real opponent and that’s one thing about Manny is he’s always going to fight the best out there.

“We’re fighting the best again, we’re getting ready for it and I love what I see so far but we still have about four weeks to go.”

Manny Pacquiao fights Errol Spence Jr on August 21

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