Reuters | 12/08/2012 10:48 AM
LAS VEGAS - Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez appeared together on Friday (December 7) to weigh-in for their weekend bout in Las Vegas. Pacquiao tipped the scales at 147 pounds and his Mexican opponent weighed in at 143.
Saturday's non-title welterweight bout between Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez has all the makings of a classic as the two fighters prepare to meet for a fourth and, almost certainly, final time in the ring.
|Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao (L) and Juan Manuel Marquez of Mexico pose during an official weigh-in. REUTERS/Steve Marcus|
Their previous three encounters were gripping, all-action affairs between Filipino Pacquiao, probably the greatest offensive fighter of his generation, and Mexican Marquez, one of the best counter-punchers in recent memory.
Adding further spice to the mix is the fact that both men have a lot to prove when they square up on Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena for their heavily anticipated showdown.
While the 33-year-old Pacquiao is eager to show his powers have not diminished with age after a below-par performance and a stunning upset in his last two bouts, Marquez is determined to set the record straight against the Filipino southpaw.
Marquez has yet to beat Pacquiao, having lost twice and drawn once, but the 39-year-old Mexican firmly believes he was "robbed" of three wins simply because of the judges' verdict.
When they last met, in November 2011, Pacquiao narrowly retained his WBO welterweight title with a controversial majority decision that was greeted by loud booing from disgruntled Marquez fans.
Shortly after the Mexican had lifted his arms in apparent triumph, the Filipino earned the verdict from two of the three judges while the third ruled that the bout had ended level at 114-114.
However that is all now in the past and Pacquiao is just as eager to win on Saturday, if only to vindicate his record against Marquez, a three-division world champion.
Pacquiao, who has a career record of 54-4-2 with 38 knockouts, lost his most recent fight on a hotly disputed split decision to American Timothy Bradley in Las Vegas in June.
Pacquiao has won world titles in an unprecedented eight weight divisions and his trainer Freddie Roach has been delighted by his fighter's preparation for Saturday's bout.
Marquez and Pacquiao fought to a draw when they first met in May 2004 and the Mexican lost his WBC super-featherweight title to the Filipino in a controversial one-point split decision in March 2008.
After Pacquiao won their most recent encounter 13 months ago in Las Vegas, Roach said Marquez had unquestionably proved to be the Filipino's most difficult opponent.
"A 100 percent yes," Roach told Reuters. "Manny loves it when guys come to him and they're aggressive.
"Marquez is a counter-puncher and we're probably going to have to go to him to make the fight happen. It's a little harder for Manny to do that, so it's the most difficult style for us."