He’s back: Pacquiao shows he has a lot left in the tank with Matthysse KO

KUALA LUMPUR (Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN) — It took one year and 13 days since Manny Pacquiao fought and his keenly-anticipated ring return on Sunday was worth the wait.

It took one year and 13 days since Manny Pacquiao fought and his keenly-anticipated ring return on Sunday was worth the wait.

Questions were raised on whether he can still fight. Pacquiao answered with his fists, dropping Lucas Matthysse thrice en route to his first knockout win in nearly a decade.

It was a throwback performance by Pacquiao, who regained his world champion status after winning the WBA welterweight title.

“I am surprised I knocked him down in the third round,” said Pacquiao, who chalked up his 60th win and bagged his 12th title, as the predominantly Filipino crowd at Axiata Arena cheered.

The plan was to finish the fight early and Pacquiao delivered on Sunday.

Pacquiao needed only seven rounds to put away the dangerous Matthysse, who was knocked down for the final time late in the seventh round. Referee Kenny Bayless didn’t even bother to finish the count as he stopped the fight at the 2:43 mark.

The first knockdown in the third round came out of nowhere after Pacquiao caught Matthysse with a left uppercut and a right straight. The other knockdown came about a second or two later after Pacquiao hit Matthysse on the left side of his head with a crisp jab.

Pacquiao wanted to prove his doubters that he still has it after spitting his last four fights, including a controversial loss to Jeff Horn last year.

Pacquiao put the boxing world on notice: He’s back.

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