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Pacquiao wins WBA welterweight title at 40 with split-decision victory over Thurman

Manny Pacquiao produced an impressive performance at MGM Grand on Saturday night.

Referee Kenny Bayless holds up Pacquiao's hand as he is declared the winner by split decision.
Referee Kenny Bayless holds up Pacquiao's hand as he is declared the winner by split decision.
Image: John Locher

MANNY PACQUIAO TURNED back the clock as the Filipino legend claimed the WBA welterweight championship after scoring a split-decision win against Keith Thurman.

Pacquiao (62-7-2) produced an impressive performance against the previously unbeaten Thurman at MGM Grand, where two judges had the fight 115-112 in favour of the 40-year-old veteran.

One judge scored the welterweight bout 114-113 to Thurman (29-1), who was knocked down by Pacquiao in the opening round on Saturday.

Thurman – who was the WBA Super holder – had vowed to send Pacquiao into retirement but the latter showed he still has plenty left in the tank.

Pacquiao retained his WBA Regular welterweight crown with a unanimous-decision victory over Adrien Broner in January and he stormed out of the blocks at the iconic American venue.

Pacquiao Thurman Boxing Pacquiao lands a punch against Keith Thurman in the fifth round in Las Vegas. Source: John Locher

After being sent to the canvas in the first round, Thurman recovered well as he soaked up Pacquiao’s punches, but he was unable to snap his opponent’s dominance.

The aggressor as he trailed on points, American Thurman took the fight to Pacquiao in the middle rounds, however, he was hurt with a big body shot in the 10th and he was unable to preserve his unbeaten status.

“It was fun,” Pacquiao said afterwards. “He’s a good fighter, a good boxer, he’s strong. He did his best, I did my best, we made the people happy.

“I really love the fans, thank you so much for coming here and witnessing the fight. I’m sure you’re happy tonight, you saw a great fight. I am just blessed tonight.

“I think my next fight is next year. After this fight I am going back to Philippines to do some work.”

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