by Nick Giongco
Australian Tim Tszyu gave Manny Pacquiao quality work in their first sparring session on Tuesday as the Filipino star revs up in training camp for his July 20 clash with Keith Thurman in Las Vegas.
Tszyu, son of the legendary Kostya Tszyu, arrived in Manila on Monday night from Sydney and went four rounds at the Elorde Five-Ecom in Pasay City.
“He’s quick and he’s relaxed,” said Tszyu, who is unbeaten in 13 fights with 10 KOs.
Tszyu will be Pacquiao’s sparmate for the next ten days, according to conditioning coach Justin Fortune.
About two and a half inches taller at 5-9, Tszyu said he was probably between 165-168 lbs.
Pacquiao leaves for Los Angeles on June 15 to begin the crucial phase of the training at the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood where Freddie Roach and Sean Gibbons have already chosen a new batch of sparmates.
Tszyu earned Pacquiao’s praise, acknowledging that it was indeed money well spent for importing him from Australia.
When Pacquiao shows up at the Wild Card in the third week of June, he is going to have to take on different guys in one session.
“This is the reason why I am getting him ready,” said Fortune, who began working as Pacquiao’s strength coach in 2003.
Pacquiao last fought on Jan. 26 when he mauled Adrien Broner. A week later, Thurman had to go through the eye of the needle against Josesito Lopez.