JOURNEY lead vocalist Arnel Pineda was chosen by boxing champion Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao to sing the Philippine national anthem for his Sunday fight.

Arnel in a television interview said it was already the third invitation of Pacman for him to sing but that he wasn't able to confirm for the first two invitations because of scheduled work.

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Pacquiao will face African boxer Joshua Clottey of Ghana in a 147-pound fight at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas Sunday morning (Philippine time).

Arnel will be singing “Lupang Hinirang” in the opening of the main bout.

“I was very very honored and grateful kay Manny kasi he's the one na pumipili ng kakanta sa fight nya,” he said.

The singer shared he still doesn't feel the pressure and excitement because he wasn't able to really grasp that he will be singing.

He however said he already saw the venue on television and was overwhelmed by how big it is.

When asked if he mastered the National Anthem, Arnel without a doubt said he's in a level that he knows the lyrics by heart.

“Kakantahin ko lang din sya kung ano yung nasa puso ko and bahala na yung Pilipino kung tinatanggap nila yung pagkakakanta ko.”

Arnel added that he's open to criticisms after his song number but promises to give the song the right Filipino way of singing it.

New Talent

The Journey vocalist was also asked on his reaction to one of Pilipinas Got Talent contestant Jovit Baldivino who shows signs of a promising singer.

“Napanood ko sya actually nung nagaaudition pa lang sya,” he said.

Arnel added that if Jovit's voice will be compared to him, the latter is more mature sounding even in his young age unlike him during his younger days.

“Malaki yung potential nya. Kung love nya talaga yung singing eh wag syang tumigil, magpractice sya ng mag practice and hanapin nya kung ano pa yung mga strenghts nya and pagalingin pa nya yung sarili nya.” (Glaiza Jarloc/Sunnex)