Manny Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao warned he faces “real fight” after agreeing to second exhibition

Pacquiao has agreed to face former sparring partner Jaber Zayani in Saudi Arabia next February, which will be his second exhibition fight after he takes on YouTuber DK Yoo

Manny Pacquiao has been warned he faces a “real fight” by Jaber Zayani after the pair signed to meet in a February exhibition bout.

Pacquiao hung up his gloves last year after losing to Yordenis Ugas in his final outing before focusing on his presidential campaign in his native Phillipines. After losing out in the political race, Pacquiao has elected to return to the ring and will first take on YouTuber DK Yoo in South Korea on December 10.

The boxing legend has now agreed to another outing following his first showcase, which is expected to take place against Frenchman Zayani next February at King Fahd Stadium in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Pacquiao’s former sparring partner is delighted to receive the opportunity and believes it is his chance to become a household name in boxing.

Manny Pacquiao will face Jaber Zayani

Manny Pacquiao will face Jaber Zayani 



“I personally negotiated with the senator together with my team and after months of talks, we finally agreed to a face off next year,” Zayani said shortly after inking the deal to take on the Filipino star. “He already signed the contract so it is a go. Call it an exhibition or something but when the senator signed the deal, I told him to prepare well because I’m going to give him a real fight.

“He then told me, ‘you better be prepared’. I was honest with the senator that I’m looking at this as my biggest break which I will surely maximise. I aim to create a buzz and become a household name. Sure, the organisers are calling this an exhibition but for me, it’s a chance to exhibit my talent as a future world champion. That’s going to be a December Samgyup party for the senator but once he meets me inside the right, he’s going to get French toasted.”

Zayani has fought 18 times as a professional and has yet to be defeated, but is yet to face significant opposition after beginning to ply his trade around Asia including holding fights in Bangkok. His 43-year-old opponent is expected to launch his own series of exhibitions in a similar way to rival Floyd Mayweather.

Many believed this could see Pacquiao look to step back in the ring as a professional, in a bid to reclaim his welterweight title by renewing his planned rivalry with Errol Spence Jr. However the former eight-division world champion has insisted that this will not lead to a full comeback.

“I just want to work hard and make sure my condition is 100 per cent so I can still show off my skills in the ring,” Pacquiao told Rappler. “Although this is just a charity event to help people out, we will still prepare like it’s a championship fight. “I took this exhibition to help out more in need, so we can continue giving out homes to our countrymen who don’t have one.”

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