Tax row mars Manny Pacquiao’s return home

Manny Pacquiao promised cash for typhoon victims but says his accounts are frozen. Picture: Vincent Yu/AP
Manny Pacquiao promised cash for typhoon victims but says his accounts are frozen. Picture: Vincent Yu/AP
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Despite returning like a hero from beating Brandon Rios over the weekend, Manny Pacquiao says he has no money to keep his promise to help typhoon victims because Philippine revenue authorities have frozen his bank accounts.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue says Pacquiao hasn’t proved that he paid taxes in 2008-09.

Pacquiao said on Tuesday he borrowed over a million pesos (£14,000) and will borrow more to keep his word to typhoon victims. He says he paid taxes in the United States following his victories over Ricky Hatton and Oscar de la Hoya and that a treaty prevents double taxation. A criminal case was dropped but the revenue authorities’ civil case to gather the taxes is pending.

Typhoon Haiyan killed over 5,200 people when it hit the central Philippines earlier this month.

Meanwhile, Nathan Cleverly’s cruiserweight debut has been cancelled after the Welshman was forced to withdraw from his meeting with Daniel Ammann, scheduled for Saturday night.

The 26-year-old former WBO world light-heavyweight champion has suffered a back injury which has ruled him out of a fight against Ammann for the vacant Commonwealth cruiserweight title. Cleverly lost his light-heavyweight title in Cardiff back in August and had originally planned to step up to cruiserweight by the turn of the year.

But those plans have now been shelved after Cleverly’s injury, although he does expect to be back in the ring early in 2014.

“It is a bitter blow as training had been going so well and I was looking forward to making my debut at cruiserweight,” he said. “For it to only happen a week before the fight is even more devastating. I just want to get this year out of the way and enter 2014 with a clean slate and get my career back on track.”

Cleverly’s withdrawal will also be a blow to promoter Frank Warren as he looks for successful cards at the Copper Box Arena after his exclusivity deal with the 2012 Olympic venue.

Dereck Chisora will still headline the show as he takes on Ondrej Pala of the Czech Republic after his previous two opponents withdrew.

Chisora is unmoved by the changes to his opponent as the WBO international heavyweight champion prepares to defend his title. The 29-year-old, who will also be gunning for the vacant WBA international heavyweight crown, had been due to face Arnold Gjerjaj and then Matteo Modugno before eventually signing a contract to face Pala.

The Czech has won 32 of his 35 fights and was drafted in at short notice following a rib injury ruling Modugno out of the contest, but Chisora is ready for all-comers.

“You just have to keep going with it and keep pushing,” he said. “You can’t complain. I have been aiming for the same weight on those scales all the time so it is no different for me, no different at all.

“First of all they sign the contract but then they get in the gym and they get hurt. My last opponent pulled out because he got injured. It is not like he didn’t want to fight. We are in the fighting game and everyone wants to fight.”

Chisora has been determined to lose weight and looked in fine condition during his media workout yesterday as the Finchley-based fighter looks to continue getting trim. “I’m feeling great and I’m excited for Saturday,” he said.

“Things are looking good. I wanted to lose a bit of weight and I’m walking around feeling good. I’m on the verge of losing even more weight, so that is good. The Copper Box is a nice arena. We are going to start packing it out soon and I hope all of the fans come and enjoy the arena and stuff. It is a home arena for me now. It is the new York Hall, basically.”

Chisora has won all three of his fights since losing to fellow Brit David Haye at Upton Park in July 2012.