Pacquiao wants rematch with Horn in Manila: tourism official
August 22, 2017
Filipino boxing icon Emmanuel Pacquiao wants to hold his rematch with Australian boxer Jeff Horn in the Philippines before his birthday in December, a government official said on Tuesday.
In a phone interview with the Daily Manila Shimbun, Assistant Tourism Secretary Frederick Alegre said 1-Pacman party-list Representative Enrico Pineda went to the office of Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo, seeking the department's support over the plan to hold the Pacquiao-Horn rematch at the Philippine Arena, which has the capacity of 50,000 people.
Pineda is part of MP Production and is Pacquiao's road manager, Alegre said.
"This morning he (Pineda) relayed that Senator Pacquiao agreed to hold the fight here," he said.
Quoting Pineda, Alegre, who was present during the meeting, said Pacquiao prefers to have the rematch in the country because he had a hard time holding it in Australia due to the "weather."
He said the congressman recalled that during Pacquiao's fight with Horn in July, the senator got sick as he also complained that in the arena , the "lights were hot, while the winds were chilly.
Horn defeated Pacquiao during their first match.
Alegre said if the rematch would take place in the country, "it's really a very big tourism event."
He added that it will be timely as the Department of Tourism is set to re-launch the 1994 "Bring Home a Friend" program on September 1.
He noted that December, when the fight is expected to take place, is the time when most Filipinos abroad go home to spend their Christmas here.
He said Pacquiao's party was eyeing to hold the rematch before the senator's 39th birthday on December 17.
Alegre said the tickets will be "affordable," with only those at the ringside, which could be expensive.
The DOT is targeting seven million foreign tourists to visit the country for 2017.
As of June, 3.3 million have visited the Philippines.
Alegre said Pacquiao-Horn's rematch could boost foreign tourist arrivals. Celerina Monte/DMS
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