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Page last updated at 09:55 GMT, Wednesday, 1 September 2010 10:55 UK

Pacquiao gives Margarito a 'second chance'

Manny Pacquiao (left) and Antonio Margarito
Pacquiao (left) is giving up a significant size advantage against Margarito

Manny Pacquiao said he believed in giving people a second chance after announcing a bout against disgraced Mexican fighter Antonio Margarito.

Filipino superstar Pacquiao will challenge Margarito for the vacant WBC light-middleweight title at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas on 13 November.

Margarito was banned after illegal hand wraps were found in his gloves before a bout against Shane Mosley last January.

"It's unfair to him that we don't give him another chance," said Pacquiao.

"Of course he knew that [he had illegal wraps]. He is just making alibis but he badly wants to fight again and to entertain people."

Plaster-like wraps were found in Margarito's gloves before a WBA welterweight title defence against American Mosley, a bout which Margarito lost.


The three-time world champion, who maintains his innocence, was denied a license to fight in California earlier this month but was reprieved by the Texas athletic commission.

Pacquiao, 31, has requested that two of his own representatives monitor Margarito's hands being wrapped before their contest but said he was not worried by his rival's past.

"That doesn't concern me," said Pacquiao, who will be competing for an eighth world title in an unprecedented eighth weight class - or sixth in six, depending on your point of view.

"We will give him one chance to prove he is not doing bad. We are just human, we are not perfect."

Pacquiao's special request posed no problem for Roberto Garcia, who took over as Margarito's trainer after previous trainer Javier Capetillo was banned.

"I know the wrapping that I do and every single time the commissioners have always congratulated me for the good job that I do," said Garcia.

"I have no problem with Manny himself being there when I am wrapping."

Margarito, 32, said: "Everything that has happened is in the past. We are now in the present. It's time to show everyone I'm still very good.

"Nobody wants to miss this fight. It's going to be a great fight. I also want to thank the commission of Texas for re-licensing me."

I don't need to prove any more in boxing, I have already achieved what I wanted. What I want right now is to maintain my greatness

Manny Pacquiao

Margarito was given the backing of promoter Bob Arum, who stated "there hasn't been a shred of proof" that the former welterweight world champion knew his wraps were illegal.

"Antonio Margarito did not know those hand wraps were illegal," said Arum, who is promoting both fighters for the November bout.

"Lack of evidence means there shouldn't have been any penalty in the first place.

"Boxing writers have said: 'He must have known'. Well, five top trainers were interviewed and all of them said they could put a bad pad in hand wraps and the fighter would never know."

Regardless of what Margarito did or did not know, he is certain to provide Pacquiao with a stiff challenge.

The Mexican (38 wins, six defeats, 27 KOs) holds a significant height and weight advantage over Pacquiao (51-3-2, 38 KOs).

"He's stronger and bigger than me so I have to seriously focus and study all of his style," said Pacquiao, who has won a seat in his country's national congress since beating Ghanaian Joshua Clottey in his most recent fight in March.

"But I don't need to prove any more in boxing, I have already achieved what I wanted. What I want right now is to maintain my greatness."

Margarito may have a size advantage over Pacquiao and remarkable punch resistance but he has fought just once since the bout against Mosley, a tune-up win in May.

see also
Victorious Marquez eyes Pacquiao
01 Aug 10 |  Boxing
Pacquiao to pursue new opponent
18 Jul 10 |  Boxing
US boxing writers honour Pacquiao
05 Jun 10 |  Boxing
Pacquiao targets one last fight
12 May 10 |  Boxing
Dominant Pacquiao beats Clottey
14 Mar 10 |  Boxing
Pacquiao-Mayweather 'will happen'
21 Jan 10 |  Boxing
Mayweather Jr-Pacquiao talks fail
07 Jan 10 |  Boxing
Margarito gets one-year fight ban
10 Feb 09 |  Boxing
Resurgent Mosley stuns Margarito
25 Jan 09 |  Boxing
Margarito ends Cotto unbeaten run
27 Jul 08 |  Boxing
Hatton floored by brutal Pacquiao
03 May 09 |  Boxing

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