Manny Pacquiao to make ring return against Vargas next November

‘Boxing is in his blood. When he trains, it’s like a pressure-release valve... he’s happy’

Manny Pacquiao knocks down Timothy Bradley Jr. in the ninth round of their welterweight fight at MGM Grand Garden Arena last April. Photograph: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Manny Pacquiao knocks down Timothy Bradley Jr. in the ninth round of their welterweight fight at MGM Grand Garden Arena last April. Photograph: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

 

Manny Pacquiao will take on American World Boxing Organisation welterweight champion Jessie Vargas when he returns to the ring on November 5th, according to the Filipino boxer’s manager Michael Koncz.

“Retirement doesn’t suit Manny right now,” Koncz told the Los Angeles Times of the former eight-division world champion.

“Boxing is in his blood. When he trains, it’s like a pressure-release valve. You can see a dramatic difference in his mood... he’s happy. It’s amazing what training and fighting does for him.”

Pacquiao (58-6-2) had announced his retirement after defeating Timothy Bradley in April and was elected to the Philippines’ senate in May. His promoter Bob Arum announced last month that he would fight again in November.

Arum tweeted earlier this week that he would travel to the Philippines for a meeting on August 10th to discuss the 37-year-old southpaw’s return.

Koncz, who will also attend the meeting, said the trio were not discussing a potential opponent, but whether to stage the bout in Los Angeles or Dubai.

“That’s the essence of the meeting,” Koncz added. “Not choosing the opponent. That’s already been done.”

Pacquiao’s unanimous decision win over Bradley was his first fight in nearly a year after his tame loss to Floyd Mayweather. He had said he was bringing the curtain down on his career to concentrate on politics and his family.

The 27-year-old Vargas (27-1) beat fellow American Sadam Ali in March to claim the WBO welterweight crown and has won 10 of his bouts via a knockout or stoppage, with his only defeat coming via a points loss to Bradley in June 2015.

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