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Welterweight champion Pacquiao knocks out retirement thoughts

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Filipino boxer and Senator Manny Pacquiao talks to fellow Senator Leila De Lima (R), during a joint hearing session of the committee on public order and dangerous drugs and the committee on justice and human rights, at Senate headquarters in Pasay city, metro Manila, Philippines November 23, 2016. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco
Filipino boxer and Senator Manny Pacquiao talks to fellow Senator Leila De Lima (R), during a joint hearing session of the committee on public order and dangerous drugs and the committee on justice and human rights, at Senate headquarters in Pasay city, metro Manila, Philippines November 23, 2016. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

TOKYO (Reuters) - Filipino boxer and Senator Manny Pacquiao said he would carry on fighting next year after unveiling a new boxing gym in downtown Tokyo on Friday.

The 37-year-old southpaw returned to the ring after a seven month retirement to claim the WBO welterweight title by beating Jessie Vargas in Las Vegas earlier this month.

"I think about it, I can still fight and my body is still okay so I decided to come back and I'm here, my journey is continued," Pacquiao said in the Japanese capital.

The southpaw has a 59-6-2 win-loss-draw record and is the winner of world titles in eight different weight divisions and the first sitting Senator to win a world boxing title.

The new 'Pacquiao Gym', a collaboration with Japanese business man Yoshihiro Agata, will open in the new year and the Filipino said it was an opportunity to pass on his experience.

"(I opened this gym) to help the people to do exercise and also...to discover a good boxer," Pacquiao said.

"I can share my knowledge about boxing and my talents. I can teach them."

(Reporting by Reuters TV. Editing by Patrick Johnston)


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