Last Updated: 21/07/19 7:58am
Manny Pacquiao beat Keith Thurman to take the WBA strap
Manny Pacquiao claimed the WBA ‘Super’ welterweight title after defeating previously-unbeaten Keith Thurman on a split decision at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
The 40-year-old Pacquiao, who went into the fight as the WBA regular champion, knocked down Thurman in the opening round but ended up having to go the distance before overcoming the reigning WBA super champion.
Two judges scored the fight 115-112 in favour of the eight-division world champion from the Philippines, with the other finding in favour of American Thurman, 114-113.
“The knock down was a big factor,” said Pacquiao, who became the oldest welterweight champion in boxing history.
Thurman was gracious in defeat but said after the contest he would relish the opportunity to fight Pacquiao again.
“I want to thank the fans. I want to thank everybody for coming out. This was a beautiful night of boxing,” he said.
Thurman was undefeated heading into the Pacquiao bout
“Manny Pacquiao is a great, truly great champion.
“I wish I had a little bit more output to go toe-to-toe. I felt like he was getting a little bit tired, but he did have experience in the ring.
“My conditioning, my output was just behind Manny Pacquiao. It was a great night of boxing. I’d love a rematch.”
Pacquiao now boasts a record of 62 wins from 71 fights, while the defeat is the first for 30-year-old Thurman after 29 victories in his professional career.