Los Angeles (AFP) – Boxing promoter Oscar De La Hoya confirmed Monday that Argentina’s World Boxing Association welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse will defend his title against Manny Pacquiao in Kuala Lumpur in July.
Filipino icon Pacquiao had first announced plans for the fight in a statement last month, but details of the bout remained shrouded in uncertainty.
In a statement on Twitter, De La Hoya said the contest was now confirmed.
“Signed, sealed, and delivered: Proud to officially announce that WBA welterweight world champion @MatthysseLucas will put his title on the line against @mannypacquiao in Kuala Lumpur, Malyasia on Saturday night July 14 (US time),” De La Hoya wrote.
Pacquiao, 39, had said last month that the fight against Matthysse would take place on June 24.
“This is going to be a tough fight. Matthysse is also a knockout artist. But I’m excited to fight and be a world champion again,” Pacquiao said.
“I’m the underdog in this fight but I’m used to it. It serves as a big motivation for me to train and fight hard to win the crown,” added Pacquiao, who has won eight world titles in a record eight weight divisions.
Pacquiao has not fought in the ring since being defeated on points by Australia’s Jeff Horn in Brisbane in July, a loss that cost the Filipino star his WBO crown.
Matthysse, who has 39 wins including 36 by knockout against four defeats, won the vacant WBA belt after beating Thailand’s Teerachai Sithmorseng in January.