By Miguel Rivera & Ernesto Castellanos, photo by Erik Estrella
WBO/WBA lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez arrived to Mexico City earlier today, and received a hero's welcome, with an anxious crowd of over 300 people, including press, radio and television, fans and family. Many carried banners with expressions of admiration and support for last Saturday's controversial twelve round majority decision loss to Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Marquez, who believes he was robbed in the first and second meeting, told reporters "this robbery was more clear." Pacquiao and his promoter, Top Rank, are planning to pursue a fourth clash with Marquez. Despite his disappointment, and talks of retirement, Marquez would consider an immediate fourth fight, but this time he wants the bout to take place in Mexico.
"Now the ball is in my court and I think the [fourth fight] should be in Mexio, under my conditions," Marquez said.
Juan's younger brother, super bantamweight Rafael Marquez, could not believe the result. He watched the fight on television and felt his brother easily won the contest. He also stated that a lot of people are alleging that HBO, the American cable network, had influence on the judges.
"It was an injustice. When the fight was over, my relatives and friends who accompanied me were happy because Juan's victory was unobjectionable. And we were overcome witt sadness when it was announced that the winner was Manny Pacquiao. It's unfair that Pacquiao is protected. Juan has been robbed in three fights against him. Juan is the best Mexican fighter today, and one of the best Mexican champions of all time, and it is not fair to tarnish his career with three unjust defeats. And this was a scandal," Rafael Marquez said.
"Look, right now I can not accuse anyone. I have no proof, but I find it very strange that the judges were wrong. My friends believe the American television network [HBO] is the one that gives instructions to the judges, because they feel Pacquiao is what makes them money. Look, I can not accuse anyone because it's very serious, but there is something behind this and I have no doubt about it. These results do damage to boxing and take away its credibility."