Manny Pacquiao is getting stronger and his sparring partners are getting beat up. Flaunting new-found power, Pacquiao nearly toppled both Ghanaian welterweight Fredrick Lawson and Briton light middleweight Liam Vaughan in a relentless eight-round scrimmage yesterday at Pacman’s Wild Card Gym in General Santos City. Revving up his preparations for his fight with Brandon Rios in Macau on Nov. 24, Pacquiao tagged Lawson (21-0, 19 knockouts), with an uppercut in the third round, buckling the Ghanaian’s knees and prompting the Fighter of the Decade to ease up. The scene was similar against the 23-year-old Vaughan (8-1, 2 KOs) as Pacquiao caught him with a left to the body. Vaughan gasped for air and nearly fell on his knees, forcing a break in the session that had chief trainer Freddie Roach and assistant trainers Buboy Fernandez and Nonoy Neri nodding in satisfaction. “Manny is wielding too much power now,” Neri said. “It appears that he wants more training to get even stronger.” Neri gave Pacquiao what he wanted—two sets of plyometric exercises for nearly 30 minutes.
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