Former world champion Manny Pacquiao will return to the ring to fight Keith Thurman in a WBA welterweight bout in July, promoters have confirmed.
The 40-year-old Filipino will face Thurman, ten years his junior, in the 71st fight of his career.Thurman will aim to defend his WBA super welterweight title against the eight-division world champion.
“The summer just got a little hotter”, the veteran boxer said on Twitter.
Promoters confirmed the fight in a statement, describing it as “the biggest night of boxing this year”. A venue is yet to be confirmed.
“Boxing’s only eight-division world champion, Senator Manny ‘Pac Man’ Pacquiao, will take on undefeated WBA Welterweight World Champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman on Saturday, July 20 in a blockbuster showdown,” the statement added.
Pacquiao beat American Adrien Broner in January, a win that took his record to 61-7-2 with 39 knockouts.
Ahead of the fight earlier this year, Pacquiao said: “Age is just a number. What matters is how you prepare and that you’re working hard.”
Meanwhile, Thurman improved to 29-0 after returning from a near two-year absence in January to retain his title with a 12-round majority decision over Josesito Lopez.
“Maybe Brooklyn, maybe Vegas, wherever Manny Pacquiao wants it,” Thurman said in January. “I’d even fight him in the Philippines if I have to.”
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