Boxing champion and Sen. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao was still all smiles even after he was stripped of his World Boxing Association (WBA) super welterweight belt.
Pacquiao tweeted on Saturday, January 30, a selfie of him smiling hours after the WBA announced that it has stripped him of his championship belt and declared him a “champion in recess” for failing to defend his Super Champion belt since he won against American boxer Keith Thurman in July 2019.
He or his camp has yet to issue a comment on the WBA’s announcement.
Netizens, however, cheered for the Filipino boxing icon.
“Can’t wait to see you fight again, Manny. Hope you and your family are safe and well. A real gentleman and inspiration,” one Joel Green replied to his tweet.
“You are an inspiration. Thank you for being you,” @TyraniusHaklar wrote.
“No one can [erase] or [strip] your boxing record pacman,” said Twitter user @SixfourRomeo.
Senator Panfilo Lacson also praised his colleague.
“They can take away all his championship belts but they cannot erase his 12 major world titles in eight different weight divisions record. Nobody even comes close. He is and will always be the People’s Champ,” Lacson also posted on Twitter.
Others, meanwhile, urged Pacquiao to continue boxing and proposed names, including 22-year-old WBC interim lightweight champion Ryan Garcia, who is rumored to be his next opponent.
Pacquiao was reported saying that he will announce the details of his next fight once talks have been finalized. He said he could fight with “anyone,” mentioning Terence Crawford, Conor McGregor, as well as Garcia.