Dyan Castillejo, 52, has followed the career of Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao, 39, since his fighting career took off. When I got the opportunity to interview the veteran sports journalist, I asked her about the common misconception about the Filipino boxing legend, who is also an incumbent senator in the Philippines.
Castillejo could not think of misconceptions about Pacquiao because with the boxing legend, what you see is what you get, she said. But if there is one thing she said people should know about him, it is the fact that he has a big heart.
Aside from his phenomenal career as a boxer and a politician, Pacquiao is also known for his philanthropy. He is said to have donated to the needy almost half of his earnings in his entire career.
In 2015, Forbes included Pacquiao in the annual list of 40 heroes of philanthropy. But more than anything else, he is a fighter, and as Castillejo noted, his desire to compete is still there.
On July 15, 2018, Pacquiao will challenge reigning World Boxing Association (Regular) Welterweight Champion Lucas “La Maquina” Matthysse, 35, at “Fight of Champions,” which will take place at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I asked Castillejo about her fight prediction.
An athlete herself, Castillejo knows how hardworking Pacquiao is when it comes to his training. With the passion and drive the fighting senator has, she said she is always positive about him every time he is scheduled to compete in the ring.
“He always goes to the fight feeling he’s going to win,” Castillejo said of Pacquiao. According to her, he told her that he was still going to improve his volume punching and combinations to bounce back from the loss to Jeff Horn, 30, of Brisbane, Australia on July 2, 2017.
The loss to Horn downgraded Pacquiao’s professional boxing record to 59 wins, 7 losses and 2 draws. He is looking to improve this by capturing the WBA (Regular) Welterweight Championship from Matthysse, who has 39 wins, 4 losses and 1 contest.
Watch my short interview with Castillejo here: