icon Updated at 09:37 PM EDT, Sun Apr 15, 2018

Pacquiao I Have Not Made My Final Decision on Freddie Roach

According to eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao, he's yet to make a final decision regarding his relationship with long-time trainer Freddie Roach.

However, Pacquiao's manager - Michael Koncz - stated in several recent interviews that his fighter made a final decision to replace Roach with close friend Buboy Fernandez.

In a brief statement, Roach reacted to the statements that were circulating in the press.


Roach said he wished Pacquiao well for the future but admitted he had been "hurt" after learning of the Filipino's decision to axe him indirectly.

"Manny and I had a great run for 16 years -- longer than most marriages and certainly a rarity for boxing," Roach said. "I wouldn't trade any of it. Inside the boxing ring and the political ring, I wish Manny nothing but the best.

"I would be lying if I didn't say I wasn't hurt that he didn't contact me personally about his decision, but the great times we enjoyed together far outweigh that."

But on Sunday, Pacquiao released a statement which claimed that he's still undecided over which individual will run his corner.

"Contrary to statements which I personally did not make that are circulating in the media, I have not made my final decision who will be my head trainer for my July 14 fight with Matthysse. My advisor Mike Koncz has been in contact with Freddie’s people to keep them informed. I will make a final decision within the week. When that decision is made, Freddie will be the first one to be informed and then I will advise the media," Pacquiao said.

Roach was an ever-present in Pacquiao's corner during his rise to the pinnacle of his sport, helping forge the fighter into one of the best boxers in history.

Pacquiao is to fight Lucas Matthyse for the Argentine's WBA "regular" welterweight belt in Kuala Lumpur on July 14.

Pacquiao has not fought in the ring since being defeated on points by Australia's Jeff Horn in Brisbane in July, a loss that cost the Filipino star his WBO crown.

Matthysse, who has 39 wins including 36 by knockout against four defeats, won the vacant WBA belt after beating Thailand's Teerachai Sithmorseng in January.