PROFESSIONAL promoter Mark Neilson discusses the biggest issues in boxing – in this week’s column, the son of former professional Eddie talks about the iconic and ever-present Manny Pacquiao.

After making his debut back in 1995, the Filipino has carved out an illustrious career in boxing, with numerous world titles, an enormous following and an even bigger number in his bank account.

For most, that would be enough to hang up the gloves and be content with their life’s work in the sport, but Pacquiao is cut from a different cloth than most modern-day fighters.

His record even reads like one of a throwback fighter, with 62 wins, eight defeats and two draws, some of which provided historic nights for boxing.

With many of his former opponents already retired, Pacquiao stands apart from the likes of Floyd Mayweather, Shane Mosely, and Ricky Hatton as he’s still fighting at 42-years old.

When my dad retired at the age of 32 in 1983, that was considered old for a professional, so it is incredible to see someone still competing at the highest level in their 40s.

Last weekend, Pacquiao stepped through the ropes for the 72nd time as he took on Yordenis Ugas at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Originally, the 42-year-old was meant to face the unbeaten and formidable American Errol Spence Jr, who you may remember for beating Brit Kell Brook in Sheffield back in 2017.

However, Spence Jr suffered an eye injury and pulled out of the fight, leaving Ugas to step in on just 11 days notice.

The fact that Pacquiao was happy to face a new opponent on such short notice is further testament to his attitude as a fighter, one who truly means it when they say: ‘I’ll fight anyone’, especially as Pacquiao hadn’t boxed in 25 months himself.

The fight itself was a hotly contest affair but ultimately the Philippine came up short, losing to the Cuban after 12 rounds.

The defeat leaves Pacquiao with a decision to make on his future, with many saying father time had finally caught up with him.

I for one would be sad to see him hang up the gloves, and only he will know when the time is right.

But one thing is for sure, we won’t get another fighter like Manny Pacquiao ever again.