Despite Pac Man losing the original encounter via a controversial split decision at the MGM Grand almost two years ago, bookmakers make no secret of their loyalty to the Filipino puncher and price a revenge mission up at no more than Coral’s 4/7 offer, with many of their competitors making the jolly as tight as 4/9. Defeat to Bradley was followed by a devastating sixth round KO loss at the fists of Juan Manuel Marquez but the stylish southpaw proved he still had the hunger for the game when bouncing back to winning ways with a lopsided points cheer over Brandon Rios last time out.
That result in China took the 35-year-old’s record to 55 wins against five defeats and two draws and with backers forced down the ‘method of victory’ route, they may be pleasantly surprised to see a 39th KO win priced at 7/2 (Bet Victor), while back-to-back points verdicts will net you 5/4 (Coral).
Undefeated Timothy Bradley came in for a world of criticism following his upset win over fans favourite Pacquiao and his career hasn’t taken off in the way many would expect after inflicting a first defeat in seven years on the then WBO king. Desert Storm has managed to hang onto his pristine record, edging another close verdict over Marquez last time out, but the box office match-ups have continued to evade him, with fight fans struggling to take to his safety-first approach.
The 30-year-old Californian is virtually friendless in the betting ring with bet365 going top price 7/4 that he repeats the feat, while another points win trades at 3/1 (YouWin). Pacquiao has been halted inside-the-distance three times before but that’s the only crumb of comfort available to those who fancy a Pacquiao stoppage, with odds compilers deeming it an unlikely outcome at 15/2 (SpreadEx).
Despite usually keeping it to myself following some crazy looks, I thought Bradley won the first fight fair and square. He ground out the result and worked for three minutes of every round, while Pac regularly left it until the last minute to step on the gas. Plenty of other fighters agree with me too, but, on TV, and to the armchair fan, it’s easy to get caught up in the Pacquiao hysteria and see only the good in what your man is doing. Having said that, I’m with the beaten warrior to rise again and reclaim his place at boxing’s top table.
Pacquiao looked more than capable of getting Rios out of there last time, and probably should have, but I see him upping his work rate here and winning over the judges. Pac on points for us. British fans can keep apace of the action courtesy of BoxNation.
I’m taking part in my seventh professional fight at the York Hall, Bethnal Green on Saturday 17th May as part of a massive Goodwin Promotions bill, including a Commonwealth title fight. Tickets can be purchased by contacting me on Twitter - @FMonkhouse or here – http://www.fightingtips.co.uk/boxing_tickets_boxoffice.html
Follow all of this weekend’s boxing betting here - http://www.olbg.com/forum/forum48.html
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- Juan Manuel Marquez
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