Manny Pacquiao will retire from boxing after his next fight in April, according to Top Rank promoter Bob Arum.
No opponent has been named for Pacquiao for his farewell fight on April 9 next year, but Arum believes the Filipino will turn his attention to a political career after his last hurrah.
Arum did add that Britain’s Amir Khan is still one of the options to go up against “Pacman” Pacquiao, who has won 57 of his 65 fights, although a move back to super-lightweight to take on WBO champion Terence Crawford has also been suggested.
Arum has been quoted as saying: “Manny told me this fight on April 9 will be his last fight.
“I’m telling you what he told me last week at dinner in New York. We talked very seriously and he said, ‘Bob, hopefully, by the middle of May I will have been elected senator in the Philippines and at that point I cannot engage in boxing because I need to focus on the senate and I have to be in attendance.’
“There are hundreds of congressmen but if he wins the senate seat he has to be there to do the work.
“It’s a real job and if Manny is serious about wanting to be president, these six years in the senate would be like an audition and for him to show his people that he really is a serious politician.”
Pacquiao has been absent in the ring since his unanimous points decision defeat by Floyd Mayweather Jr in May, one of three losses for the 36 year old in his past six bouts.
Arum went on to say : “Manny told me this would be his last fight and I’m not sad about it because he’s going on to a political career which will require a lot of mental acuity, so you don’t want him to stay in boxing too long
“If he stays in boxing a little too long his mental faculties might be somewhat impaired.”
The 28-year-old “King” Khan told Sky Sports in September that he was intent on fighting Pacquiao to set up an opportunity to get in the ring with Mayweather, although some reports later suggested that Amir’s camp had pulled out of negotiations.
The man from Bolton and former Olympian said on September 28: “I want to fight Manny Pacquiao next because if I beat him, maybe that will make Floyd Mayweather come out of retirement to fight me. The public demand would be huge.”