Manny Pacquiao defeats Jessie Vargas, sets up for potential Mayweather rematch
One of professional boxing’s favourite sons, Manny Pacquiao, made a successful return to the ring when he outclassed WBO Welterweight Title holder Jessie Vargas with a dominant unanimous decision victory.
The scorecards read 118-109,118-109 and 114-113 in favour of the Filipino dynamo, who barely betrayed any ring rust despite being out of action for a while.
Vargas found himself heavily outmatched in terms of skill for much of the bout, but the fight also re-inforced the notion that Pacquiao, although supremely skilled as ever, just isn’t the knockout machine that he once was.
The nifty footwork, imperious angle cutting and peppering combinations were all still there, however, as Pacman continues to soldier on despite creeping up on 40.
Fanning the fires of speculation, Floyd Mayweather’s presence at ringside also presented a talking point, as there are still some murmurings about a potential rematch between them after their ‘Fight of the Century’ drew flak from all quarters.
Pacquiao blamed the loss on a torn rotator cuff, for which he sought surgery after the fight, while Mayweather was accused of delaying the fight until Manny was presumably past his prime as a fighter.
Despite the massive payday that the fight yielded both fighters, fans were left largely unsatisfied with the bout.
With Pacquiao netting a reported $4 million for the Vargas fight, and looking good while doing it, talk is rife about his next opponent and whether the self-proclaimed Best Ever would be up for a rematch.
Mayweather, on the other hand, has been happy to let his name be associated with a potential Conor McGregor superfight as well, as the world wait to see whether combat sport’s premier money man can be coaxed out of retirement for one last bumper payday.