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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 24 February 2019

Manny Pacquiao beyond the ropes: philanthropist, politician, pugilist

The Filipino fight king prepares to face Adrien Broner in Las Vegas on Saturday

Last month, John McAuley spent time with legendary Philippines boxer Manny Pacquiao in Manila.

He was given exclusive access to one of sport's most enduring figures, one who splits his time between the senate and the ring, and, more importantly, offers hope to an entire nation.

In Manila, John witnessed first hand the magnetism of Manny, the throngs who line up outside his house to receive charity from a man who knows their plight only too well. He observed star-struck fans who watch every punch as Pacquiao pounds the pads with long-time trainer and friend Buboy Fernandez at a gym in downtown Manila. He saw senate staff who seek a cherished memento with their boss in the form of a selfie. All are drawn like a moth to a flame.

Known around the world as both a record-breaker and history-maker, few work harder than Pacquiao the politician to alleviate the suffering of his compatriots; his philanthropy as recognised as any achievement in the ring.

Now age 40, the pride of the Philippines Pacquiao, winner of an unprecedented world titles in eight divisions, goes to war for a 70th time during a professional career thrust into its third decade, when on Saturday in Las Vegas he defends his WBA welterweight championship against Adrien Broner.

Pacquiao - philanthropist, politician, pugilist.

Manny Pacquiao beyond the ropes series

Part 1: A man who gives hope to the Philippines

Part 2: Turning 40 and no signs of slowing

Part 3: The final chapter - Broner, Mayweather and the fear of going on for too long

Updated: January 17, 2019 06:20 PM

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