Manny Pacquiao couldn’t exactly tell the last time he had a drink–or even a sip–of anything that had alcohol on it. Having drawn inspiration from his religious transformation, Pacquiao is proud to say that he has been sober since 2011.
For somebody who used to drink heavily, gamble a great deal and engage in illicit affairs, avoiding these highly-addictive vices were easily achieved by Pacquiao, citing that God told him in a dream that it was time to mend his ways.
“I can’t remember the last time I drank,” said Pacquiao, staring at the ceiling of his office at the MP Tower in Quiapo, Manila, in search of an answer. Pacquiao tried his best to recall that time, squinting his eyes but there was no answer even after a lengthy pause. “I don’t know when exactly but it (the last time) was probably in the early-second half of 2011.”
For the last 18 or so months, Pacquiao either drank water or protein shakes and stayed away from betting in cockfights and pool halls and spending countless hours in casinos, spending his free time attending to his congressional duties and preaching, urging others to lead a clean life. Even while playing basketball, Pacquiao always reminds his teammates and even players from opposing teams to shun alcohol.
In fact, when Pacquiao celebrated his 34th birthday last December in General Santos City, alcohol was not served and very much unlike in the previous years when classy wine and upmarket liquor flowed freely.
One subordinate has also somehow heeded Pacquiao’s call that he no longer goes out at night to down a few bottles of his favorite brew but does so in the private confines of his living room, away from the eyes of his boss.
Months and months without alcohol hasn’t deterred his resolve and Pacquiao also succeeded in getting rid of his nasty gambling habit and forget about his lascivious lifestyle.
It is for these reasons that Pacquiao is optimistic of his much-awaited ring return in September against a foe who will be named by June. “Walang inom. Walang bisyo,” said Pacquiao. “Ready to fight tayo.” Whether it is going to be his tormentor Juan Manuel Marquez or not, Pacquiao assures everyone he will be back with a bang. Before his interviewer could utter the words, Pacquiao beat him to the punch.
“Yes, we will rise again.”