MANILA, Jul 21, 2019, PhilStar. Malacañang Sunday hailed Sen. Manny Pacquiao’s win against American boxer Keith Thurman, calling it a victory for the entire Filipino nation. “We thank Senator Manny for not only bringing honor and glory to our flag, but for once again uniting all Filipinos worldwide with his display of athleticism, power and Filipino pride. Mabuhay ka, Manny! Mabuhay ang Pilipinas! (Long live, Manny, Long live the Philippines),” presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said in a statement, reported the Philippine Star.
“Pacquiao’s victory is not only his, but of the entire nation. As such, the Palace is one in rejoicing with the Filipino people as the Pambansang Kamao once again puts the flag above the pedestal with his display of tenacity and courage,” he added.
Panelo noted that Pacquiao also made the Philippines proud at the start of the year when he successfully defended his World Boxing Association welterweight belt over another American boxer, Adrien Broner.
“Six months later, he doubled this feat as he defeated Keith Thurman today via split decision, even knocking him down in the 1st round,” the presidential spokesman said.
“Although his opponent, Thurman, is way younger than him, our pound-for-pound King did not show any signs of intimidation as he embodied what a Filipino spirit is all about – a fighter,” he added.
Thurman is 10 years younger than Pacquiao but the latter managed to gain the WBA “super” welterweight belt from the former in a split decision win at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles also lauded Pacquiao for being a “model” to Filipinos.
“You (Pacquiao) have proven time and again that hard work and faith are the one-two punch to winning in life, inside and outside the boxing ring,” Nograles said in a statement.
“May you continue to inspire our countrymen with your achievements, and serve as a model to our people with the humility and grace you display after every hard-fought contest,” he added.