Harsh? Maybe so but that is how I saw that fight.
You see, I was supposed to write what happens to the Philippine scene whenever Manny Pacquiao fights – the streets become empty, no vehicles moving about, people gathering to the nearest house with cable TV and is open to people; the Philippines just comes together to watch Manny Pacquiao fight in an attempt to bring home another victory – a proof would be the zero crime rate that is reported at the end of the fight day.
But that all changed when the sixth round came.
And this is the first Pacquiao fight, in a long time, that I cared to watch on cable TV. We don’t have cable TV at our house so we just go to my cousin’s place to watch it. Usually, I just stick with the free TV broadcast. Boy, was I disappointed!
Though, I am not a very big fan of boxing. Neither am I a big fan of Manny Pacquiao but I care enough to watch.
The Event started at around 12:30pm here in the Philippines.
During the first round, Manny already started attacking but Clottey wasn’t – he was on his solid defense mode. The scene was about the same during the second round. That didn’t come as a surprise to me. Maybe, he was tryna assess Pacquiao’s strength and was tryna figure out how to fight him.
But when the third and fourth rounds came and the scene was still the same, I was like, “Are you kidding me?! Are you still tryna figure out how to fight Manny?”
I remember him saying something like,
Manny will not attack me. I will attack him.
Where did that go?
I cared to watch this fight as much because I thought that it was interesting enough because Clottey was deemed as a strong fighter but he can also be a dirty fighter.
One of the people on Manny’s side was warning him about Clottey’s tactic of stepping on his opponent’s foot. But that still wasn’t avoided.
Before the seventh round started, if I heard it right, Clottey’s coach told him,
“Let’s take chances. Open.”
I thought that would bring the fight to life.
So, when the seventh round started, Clottey threw a few punches. He started fighting more but, once again, we were all disappointed when he switch back to total defense mode.
When the eight round ended, the round where Clottey did a low blow, and he still wasn’t fighting as much as he should, I already had this thought: “This fight is not gonna end in a TKO victory by either of them. Most probably, this will end in a victory by unanimous decision in favor of Manny Pacquiao.”
Two more rounds came and ended with the scene on the ring being just about the same.
By this time, I already thought, “This guy [Joshua Clottey] is not going for the win. He’s going for survival.”
Before the 11th round started, Clottey’s coach was caught saying,
You know you have the power to knock him out. You have the strength. Take chances, man.
But Clottey did not man up to it. I’m thinking his coach was also tired of watching him stay on the ring in total defense.
When the 11th round ended, there was some sort of commotion. We all thought the fight was already being ended but it went on.
Before the 12th round started, Clottey’s coach was telling him to breathe. Maybe, he was already about to break down.
But just before the fight ended, there was a headbutt. Was that really inevitable?
So, yeah, just as I thought, The Event ended, around 2pm, in a victory by unanimous decision in favor of Manny Pacquiao.
No, I should put it as, the fight ended with Manny Pacquiao trying to give a great show and Joshua Clottey trying to survive Manny Pacquiao.
At least, Manny Pacquiao tried to fulfill what he said in one of the press conferences,
We’ll try to give a great show.
And we all left disappointed.
Update: March 15, 2010
Today, when I was getting some water, one guy from our neighborhood told me that he can’t stand to watch the fight that he’s turned off his TV by the eight round.
I was like, “I bet all those people who paid $700 just to watch that boxing event were dismayed.”