Pacquiao, 39, rolls back years to stop Matthysse

Manny Pacquiao forces Lucas Mathysse to take a knee after a short right hook landed square on the latter’s temple during their 12-round world welterweight championship in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Sunday.|AFP Photo

Manny Pacquiao rolled back the years as he stopped WBA welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse on Sunday—the 39-year-old Filipino icon’s first win inside the distance since 2009.

It was a dominant, devastating display as Pacquiao registered the 60th win of a fabled 23-year career that now looks certain to extend beyond his 40th birthday in December.

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Pacquiao knocked down the big-puncher from Argentina as early as the third round with a stunning left uppercut that thudded around the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur.

The 35-year-old Argentine, who came in with a reputation as a big puncher, had no answer to Pacquiao’s blistering speed and he dropped again in the fifth.

When a right-left combination thudded home to send Matthysse crashing down for a third time in the seventh round referee Kenny Bayless stepped in to save him from further punishment.

“I’m surprise I knocked him down so early,” said Pacquiao who extended his record to 60 wins, seven losses and two draws. “I’m surprised I knocked Matthysse down in the third, fifth and seventh.

“It was a long time ago since I’ve done that. I came out smoking hot.

“We did a good job in training. We were not pushing hard — we controlled our pace and ourselves.

“I’m no longer young so thanks to my trainer and all my team members.” (Agence France-Presse)



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