By Ronnie Nathanielsz
THE main sparring partner of Manny Pacquiao has arrived in Manila and is eager to begin training with the Fighter of the Decade in his Pacman Wild Card Gym in General Santos City, when he flies there on Monday.
Pacquiao has begun light training for his eagerly awaited rematch with World Boxing Organization welterweight champion Timothy Bradley at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 12.
The eight-division world champion has been jogging at the Acharon Sports Complex in his hometown and playing basketball, which he always does to stay in shape.
Lydell Rhodes told BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard a few hours after his arrival on Sunday that being a sparring partner of Pacquiao “is a lifetime chance because he is one of the best in our generation, together with Floyd Mayweather Jr.”
Rhodes, who has an unbeaten record of 19 wins, 9 of them by knockouts, said he knows that Pacquiao “is fast and ferocious” and that he plans to learn “as much as I can from him.”
“I’ll bring more speed than Bradley,” said Rhodes, who was once trained by Floyd Mayweather Sr., the father and trainer of Floyd Mayweather Jr.,
Rhodes said he hopes to do his best to make sure that Pacquiao “is as prepared as I can make him.”
Three weeks of sparring are being planned between the two in GenSan after which Rhodes will travel to Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Gym to continue training with Pacquiao.
Boxing writer Chris Robinson said that Rhodes “possesses some serious talent and is one of the quickest prospects in the city (Las Vegas).”