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Pacquiao begs off from joining Olympics

Isaac Brekken/AP (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Manny Pacquiao formally declined from joining the Open-Olympic qualifying boxing tournament in Baku, Azerbaijan.

The AIBA set Friday as the deadline of registration for the Open-Olympic Qualifier, basically giving Pacquiao until Friday to decide if he will jump out of retirement to go for gold in Rio De Janeiro.


But on Thursday, a night before the deadline, Pacquiao, through a statement released by ABAP, begged off to "prioritize his legislative duties." The incumbent congressman of Sarangani won as senator in the May 9 elections.


ABAP has already said that they will respect Pacquiao's decision about his Olympic bid.


Pacquiao formally said his intent to retire from boxing on April 10 (Philippine Time) following his win against Tim Bradley.

Should he push through, Pacquiao could have joined the Olympics in two ways, either through the said qualifying event or through a direct wildcard bid given to each country by AIBA.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno