Chris Farina - Top Rank
Monday, Nov. 22, 2010 | 1:17 p.m.
His status as a great fighter secure following his latest victory, Manny Pacquiao plans to leave boxing in three years.
Pacquiao, a congressman, spoke in the Philippine House of Representatives on Monday. He received the congressional medal for the second time.
Pacquiao turns 32 next month and was asked at a news conference when he intends to retire.
“Not too long from now,” he said. “But I don’t want to go beyond 35.”
Pacquiao scored a lopsided decision over Antonio Margarito on Nov. 13 in Arlington, Texas. He is the only the only boxer to hold eight championship belts in eight different divisions.
Pacquiao is willing to fight Mexico’s Juan Manuel Marquez again, although he understands that might not excite fans.
“I think people are not so interested … because if I were a boxing fan, I would not watch Pacquiao vs. Marquez,” he said.
Pacquiao was elected representative of southern Sarangani province in May national elections. He has surprised many by taking his new job as seriously as boxing. He said he had initiated steps to build the first provincial hospital for Sarangani’s 500,000 residents, in addition to offering programs for the poor.
In accepting the congressional award, Pacquiao said he was inspired in the ring by the love for his country, and that his achievements show Filipinos can excel against all odds.
“My championship belt in the eighth weight division, the first in the history of boxing, shall forever cement the Filipino people as the eighth wonder of the world,” Pacquiao said.