Matthysse: I’ll take belt back home

  • Written by Joe Antonio
  • Published in Boxing
  • Read: 257
PACQUIAO: Ready to rumble against Matthysse. PACQUIAO: Ready to rumble against Matthysse.

Lucas Matthysse to get knocked out in just a few rounds? Lucas Matthysse having trouble with his weight?

The Argentine champion sneered at these reports as he fielded questions from the media on Wednesday after a morning workout ahead of his World Boxing Association welterweight bout against Manny Pacquiao in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

“They can think whatever they want. I had great preparation. I’m here with my belt and I’m taking it back home with me,” said Matthysse, sweat streaming down his body after a training session under the guidance of chief trainer Joel Diaz.

“I’m just enjoying everything I’m doing. All the hard work is already done. We did the hard work already back home. Now I’m just maintaining, basically just tuning up. Just getting ready and resting,” he said.

Asked if he’s having a problem meeting the welterweight limit of 147 pounds, Matthysse, 35, smiled and graciously let his trainer do the talking.

“He’s only a couple of pounds over. He’s probably at 149,” Diaz said.

“He’s been like that for the last couple of weeks. It’s never been an issue. He had to adjust to the heat (in Kuala Lumpur), but he’s doing well now.”

Pacquiao and Matthysse clash in a 12-round bout this Sunday night at the Axiata Arena—the biggest of its kind to be held in the Malaysian capital in decades— before an expected huge crowd that will include President Duterte and several members of his cabinet.

To the uninitiated, Diaz was the same trainer who was in the corner of Timothy Bradley for the first two of the American’s three duels against Pacquiao, so he knows what he is talking about.

Talking to Sid Ventura of ESPN 5, Diaz said his was will climb the ring ready, both physically and mentally.

“The mentality is the most important. Physically, Lucas prepares himself really well because he works really hard,” said Diaz.

“A lot of people don’t realize that Manny is so intense in the ring, he doesn’t wear down physically. He wears you down mentally. So that’s one of the most important preparations that we did for him,” he added.

“My boy is ready for whatever Manny brings to him.”