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Pacquiao: I'm ready for world title defense

Manny Pacquaio is training in the U.S. ahead of his fight against Antonio Margarito on 13 November.
Manny Pacquaio is training in the U.S. ahead of his fight against Antonio Margarito on 13 November.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Manny Pacquiao training in U.S. for November 13 bout against Antonio Margarito
  • His trainer Freddie Roach concerned Pacquiao lacked focus ahead of title defense
  • Pacman is now a congressman in the Philippines after winning a seat in May's elections
  • Pacquiao is a seven-time world champion in different weight divisions

(CNN) -- World champion boxer Manny Pacquiao insists he is fully focused on his defense of the super-welterweight title against Antonio Margarito next month after reports he was planning to quit the ring.

The rumors had been fueled after Pacquiao's long-time coach Freddie Roach said the Filipino was more preoccupied with his new role as a congressman and could not concentrate on his preparations for the November 13 bout.

Nicknamed Pacman, Pacquiao -- the only boxer in history to have won a world title at seven different weight divisions -- has taken a break from politics as he prepares to take on Mexico's Margarito in Dallas, Texas.

Roach was worried that his charge could not fully concentrate on the sport in Baguio City in the Philippines, and the pair decided to move to the trainer's famous gym in Los Angeles for their final weeks of training before the fight.

It's going to be hard and difficult because I'm moving up to a higher weight division so I have to focus and study hard
--Manny Pacquiao
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"He told me at the first week of training that he missed his job. I said this is your job, and he said he missed congress," Roach told Pacquiao's official website.

"So I was a little bit worried, but we got over those distractions. We are here [in L.A.] now and he's on fire."

The 31-year-old Pacquiao confirmed he has buckled down to training since arriving in California.

"Right now it's a good thing we come back here, " he told Sky Sports.

"It's going to be hard and difficult because I'm moving up to a higher weight division so I have to focus and study hard."

Roach -- who reportedly called the training sessions in the south east Asian country their worst ever after Pacquiao had to take a day off to visit the president in Manilla -- also said that things had improved significantly since being in Los Angeles.

"The change of scenery was the biggest thing, this is where he knows it happens," Roach added.

"This is his home, this is his comfort zone, this is where he shines. Yesterday [Wednesday], we had our best day of sparring. It was like night and day compared to last Saturday."

Pacquiao was lined up for an eagerly-awaited clash with American Floyd Mayweather Jr. earlier this year, but negotiations broke down amid a welter of recriminations and legal threats.

A clash with Mayweather would likely be the richest in boxing history, but appears no closer to fruition.