Pacquiao defeats Thurman via split decision, new WBA Super World Welterweight champion

Brenda Watkins
July 21, 2019

The undefeated Thurman went into the bout having never been knocked down as he looked to protect a dominant career record (29-0, 22 KOs).

Pacquiao showcased the blistering speed that he's become famous for, rattling Thurman with a combination of punches before dropping him with a big right.

Almost 25 years after a 16-year-old Pacquiao stepped onto the scales for his pro debut with rocks in his pockets just to make the 105-pound minimum weight, the 40-year-old politician showed he could have several years left in his day job.

Both men thrilled onlookers with a brutal exchange of punches throughout the fight.

Judges scored the fight 114-113 to Thurman, 115-112 for Pacquiao and 115-112 for Pacquiao. That fight, which was considered to be a poor perfomance from Thurman, left many questions that were later answered in tonight's fight with Pacquiao.

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"It was fun", Pacquiao told the Associated Press afterward. "He's a good boxer". I think he did his best, and I did my best. He moved forward to land a left to the body and a right hook that sent Thurman to the canvas with 25 seconds left in the first round.

With his long-time rival Floyd Mayweather seated at ringside, Pacquiao turned back the clock and look much like he did in his heyday.

Keith Thurman was a whole lot tougher to beat, but the 40-year-old Filipino senator managed to win that vote as well. "So it's all set for tomorrow", said Pacquiao, the only eight-division world champion in the history of the sport.

Pacquiao went from early fight week underdog to fight night favorite with the Vegas sportsbooks as floods of money came in for the Filipino star. "My conditioning was a little behind Manny Pacquiao's".

Pacquiao (61-7-2, 39 KOs), the secondary WBA champ, has shown a bit of a career resurgence as he's claimed two consecutive victories after his controversial loss to Jeff Horn in 2017.

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