Pacquiao–Marquez 4 still too close to call

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Saturday, December 8, 2012


WHILE no titles will be at stake this time, Filipino ring icon Manny Pacquiao and Mexican legend Juan Manuel Marquez will try to settle who's the best boxer in their prime when they clash December 8 (December 9, Manila time) for the fourth time.

Instead, Pacquiao and Marquez will fight for the right to be called the WBO Fighter of the Decade or the WBC Diamond belt which they put at stake whenever two stars fight without a regular WBC title being available and boxing observers are seeing a good fight for their fourth bout.

“I believe coach Freddie Roach has solved Marquez for their fourth bout but it will still be too close to call,” said Shape Up Boxing Gym's Anson Tui Co, where Pacquaio trained four times in his last six fights.

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Tui Co added Marquez should stick to his game plan and at the same time the Mexican needs to prove himself to be able to get the judges nudge this time.

“I hope this fight should settle everything,” continued Tui Co.

Pacquiao and Marquez last three bouts saw controversial decision with the Filipino eight time weight division champion winning twice with one draw

In a report by BoxingScene.com, the Pacquiao-Marquez I and II demonstrates that little separated the two fighters from a numbers standpoint and in their first fight, Marquez (54-6-1, 39 KO) out-landed Pacquiao 158 to 148 in total punches and 122 to 100 in power shots. While Pacquiao (54-4-2, 38 KO) out-threw Marquez 639 to 547 in total, Marquez landed at a more accurate clip (29 percent to 23 percent).

In their second encounter, Marquez again out-landed Pacquiao in total punches (172 to 157) and in power shots (130 to 114). Further tightening matters is the fact that out of their first 24 contested rounds, Marquez landed more total punches in 12 stanzas, while Pacquiao held the edge in nine frames (with three even).

In total, Marquez holds a 330 to 305 edge in total connects and a 252 to 214 advantage in power punches over the first two fights.

The third Pacquiao-Marquez bout also figured to provide some clarity and a definitive end to the rivalry but statistical trends shifted slightly (per BoxingScene.com), the decision was close and controversial as Pacquiao out-landed Marquez 176 to 138 in total punches and 117 to 100 in power shots.

After three fights, Pacquiao holds a narrow 481 to 468 edge in total connects, while Marquez has a slim 352 to 331 advantage in power punches.

Long time boxing analyst Al Mendoza said Pacquiao must be aggressive for him to score a knock out against his Mexican archrival.

“Kelangan aggressive si Pacquiao at the same time wag nyang antayin yung counterpunch ni Marquez,” said the veteran sports scribe.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on December 09, 2012.

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