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Pacquiao believes loss to Horn was a ‘set up’

Manny Pacquiao also mentions that the referee in the fight was incompetent.

Manny Pacquiao v Jeff Horn Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images
Wil Esco is an assistant editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2014.

Former welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao didn’t protest much in the immediate aftermath of his stunning upset loss to Jeff Horn over the weekend, but now Pacquiao is letting it be known how he really feels about how that fight played out.

Specifically, Pacquiao mentions that he believes he was leading the fight by four or five rounds in a video that aired on ABS-CBN and was captured by RingTV. And now Pacquiao is also telling the Manila Bulletin that he believes there was some corruption at play, saying “The referee wasn’t competent. I felt I was set up.”

Pacquiao believes referee Mark Nelson was far too liberal in allowing Jeff Horn to utilize wrestling and rough house tactics during the fight, all without ever warning Horn of fouling — something trainer Freddie Roach also made mention of.

“The wrestling, getting hit behind the head a lot, it didn’t look good but the referee didn’t pay any attention to it,” said Roach of referee Mark Nelson.

That said, Pacquiao does mentions that the 115-113 scores in favor of Horn were arguably reasonable, but that the 117-111 score against him was just too much of a reach. So when asked if he thinks his Top Rank promoter might’ve had anything to do with the ‘set up’ due to his expiring contract with the company, Pacquiao simply replied:

“Let’s not think about that.”

Manny Pacquiao is expected to give retirement some serious consideration following this loss, but does have a rematch clause with Horn should he want to go that route again.

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