Manny Pacquiao wants to fight in the Paris Olympics. His professional career might be behind him but the senator wants to go back to competing as an amateur again.

Fight fans in the Philippines would love to see the multiple time world champion win a gold medal in 2024. But Pacquiao has left it very late with the qualification process already underway.

Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham Tolentino told the Philippines Daily Inquirer that,

“Senator Pacquiao’s camp reached out saying our Filipino ring idol wants to fight in Paris but the Senator can no longer vie for qualification in the Asian Games in Hangzhou next month.”


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Too old

Pacquiao is also too old to compete in the Asian Games which is only open to boxers aged 40 or under. But where there’s a will there is normally a way and it sounds like everyone involved would like to make it happen.

Pacquiao would not necessarily need to qualify by winning a tournament. He could secure a universality spot, there are five available to male boxers with the Philippines Olympic Committee responsible for nominating them.

Pacquiao would have to choose between competing at 63.5kgs or 71kgs. He spent the last decade of his career fighting primarily at 66.7kgs so it would be interesting to see which division he chose.

Many of the biggest names in the sport of boxing had successful amateur careers and competed in The Olympics before turning pro. Floyd Mayweather won a bronze medal at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996.

Oscar de la Hoya won gold at the Barcelona Olympics in 2002. That victory earned him the ‘Golden Boy’ nickname which would remain with the multiple time world champion throughout his career and become the name of his promotional company.


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Tough times

Pacquiao reportedly had an amateur record of 60-4 and was invited to join the Philippines National Team. But times were tough and he elected to turn pro at the age of 16 instead,

The rest is history. Pacquiao would go on to win 12 world titles across eight divisions and establish himself as one of the best boxers of the 21st century.

In the process he became a multi millionaire and even ran for president last year. But unlike many of his rivals Pacquiao never had amateur success.

It is arguably the only achievement missing from the 44 year old’s incredible resume. He would like the opportunity to have one final crack at winning a gold medal at the Olympics and it sounds like Pacquiao might well get it.