Fight Interviews

[Interview] “When you’re champ it’s harder…” Mark Magsayo on Learning from Pacquiao’s Flaws, Rey Vargas and Seeking a Mexican Rival

The new featherweight champ speaks before his first defense!
Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

The real work now begins for Mark Magsayo. Last January, the 27-year-old featherweight scored the biggest win of his career when he upset Gary Russell Jr. to win the WBC title. This Saturday July 9 (Showtime, 9 p.m. ET), he makes his first defense against veteran and former title-holder Rey Vargas at San Antonio’s Alamodome, the same building where Magsayo’s idol Manny Pacquiao scored one of his best victories by knocking out Marco Antonio Barrera.

Magsayo sat down with BeatsBoxingMayhem to reflect on a myriad of topics headed into this weekend:

  • Adjusting to the fame of being a Filipino world champion
  • How he stayed mentally composed against a tricky fighter like Russell Jr.
  • Can the wild fighting style of his early career work in spots against Rey Vargas?
  • The essential career role of his wife
  • Learning from the mistakes Manny Pacquiao made
  • Who can be his Mexican rival?

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