As the world gears up for one of the most eagerly anticipated bouts in boxing history, Manny Pacquiao’s trainer has shed light on the fighter’s tough upbringing which once saw his father eat his dog.
Pacquiao’s brutal upbringing in the Philippines saw the boxer living on the streets as a youngster, before he turned pro aged 14 as he sought to escape from povety.
“Manny ran away from home after his father ate his dog,” trainer Freddie Roach once revealed.
The incident happened when Pacquiao was 12 years old, after a friend of his father’s had killed the dog. The fighter now has a nine-year-old Jack Russell who joins him on training runs and in the gym.
Roach also spoke about how the young Pacquiao would make ends meet in the shantytown in which he lived:
“He lived on the street, where he bought doughnuts at a doughnut store and then sold each one for a nickel more to survive.
“He slept in a cardboard box. He fought his way through all this, turned pro at 14, and look at the man he is today.
“The Philippines is a poor place, there’s no welfare, no health system and if you don’t have a job or money then you do anything to survive.”
Pacman’s rags to riches story has seen him become an icon in his home country, where he is widely expected to run for president when he hangs up his gloves.
“It’s just unbelievable,” said Roach. “I went to his birthday party, the President of the Philippines was there, there were 5000 people at the party, and 10,000 outside who couldn’t get in. He’s an icon, because he represents the hopes of so many people.”
“When he fights, there is no crime in the Philippines, because everyone is watching him box. He has come such a long way. He wants to go into politics, he’s going to college right now, and after two more years of boxing, he will go into politics.”
Pacquiao and the undefeated Floyd Mayweather go head-to-head on Saturday evening in Las Vegas.
SOURCE: Daily Monitor