Manny Pacquiao will finally make his return in the initial phase of 2024 against the Muay Thai legend Buakaw Banchamek. This match is going to be a boxing match, which restricts Banchamak from using elbows and leg kicks. More details about the fight card and venue details shall be publicly disclosed in the forthcoming days.
It's an exhibition bout, so the outcome of the event will not be accounted for in their professional records. Both fighters will have to weigh in at around 154 pounds. Pacquiao last fought against Yordenis Ugas in 2021 and faced a tough unanimous decision loss, there were talks about a potential match between Conor Benn and Pacquiao, but clearly, the conversations couldn't reach a fruitful conclusion.
Manny Pacquiao on his next fight
The kick off press conference recently took place at the Icon Siam Park in downtown Bangkok, where both fighters squared off and shared a few words. Pacquiao seems to be happy about his upcoming match and acknowledged that Muay Thai is harder than boxing.
"I'm happy to be back here. My last fight here was in 1998," Pacquiao said, as quoted by boxingscene.com. "I need to prepare, knowing I will need at least 90% to deal with Buakaw". "Muay Thai, I like. But I think it must be difficult using all those elbows and kicks and knees.
Probably Muay Thai is harder than boxing". From the entertainment standpoint, this event is doubtlessly going to be very entertaining, and it will be very interesting to see if Banchamek's striking abilities are prominent enough to stop Pacquiao.
Buakaw Banchamek has a lot of experience in the field of Muay Thai; he fought almost 300 professional fights. This match is far from one-sided – anything can happen, two legends following different disciplines are going to clash. It is very inspiring to see them fight at their age, Manny Pacquiao is 44, and Buakaw Banchamek is 41.