Manny Pacquiao has fallen behind in preparations for his fight with Australian Jeff Horn in Brisbane on July 2, according to the Filipino great’s trainer.
Pacquiao completed his second sparring session near Manila on Tuesday but his form five weeks from the bout has failed to impress.
“His second day of sparring today is maybe the worst I’ve ever seen so far,” trainer Freddie Roach told Filipino media.
“His timing is really, really off.”
The comments will be music to the ears of Horn, the 29-year-old former schoolteacher who is plotting what would be a monstrous upset over the eight-division world champion, who holds the WBO welterweight title.
Pacquiao, also a senator in The Philippines, sparred five rounds against two local fighters, who both reportedly held their own against the boxing great.
Pacquiao’s camp has previously assured he is not taking Horn lightly.
But the 38-year-old was criticised for a dismissive attitude towards Brisbane product Horn during a promotional tour in Australia last month.
Roach admitted Pacquiao was “way behind” their training schedule despite being positive his star charger would be ready by the time he appears at Suncorp Stadium.
“(It’s) not going to happen overnight. It’s going to be a process,” Roach said.
Meanwhile, Horn has been quietly going about his business in Brisbane, happily letting his esteemed opponent take the spotlight.
Roach also explained to ABS-CBN why Pacquiao cannot afford to underestimate Horn, who has stopped his past three opponents to surge up the world rankings.
“He’s dangerous with the right, he’s has a real good right hook, and that’s something that Manny’s been hit with before,” he said.
“We’re fixing all that now, and it won’t be a concern by fight time.”
Pacquiao is expected to land in Brisbane one week out from the fight, which could take place in front of as many as 55,000 at Suncorp Stadium.