The boxing bout between Manny Pacquiao and Buakaw Banchamek has been called off. "The Match of Legends" was set for April 20 live from Bangkok, Thailand.
RISE and WBC Muay Thai world champion Chadd Collins reported on Instagram that he was set to defend his WBC Muay Thai crown against Savvas Michael, but said that the promotion is not moving forward. Sitsongpeenong's manager Tristian Dharmajiva added on X, formerly Twitter, that Thananchai Sitsongpeeong and Joe Ryan were booked at the now cancelled event.
Manny Pacquiao vs. Buakaw was set to have a sizeable payday in the range of $25 million. It also had a venue and a booked date. There was even a WBC Legends belt that was to be put on the line between the two fighters.
The Filipino-born Pacquiao is one of the greatest boxers in history. The athlete has collected numerous world titles in the WBC, WBO, IBF, and more. Buakaw is an iconic kickboxer who is celebrated for his run in the K-1 MAX tournaments. In Thailand, Buakaw is a celebrity icon as Pacquiao is in the Philippines.
Both Buakaw and Pacquiao have kept busy with various exhibition showcases in recent years. The pride of the Philippines took an exhibition match in 2022 against Korea's DK Yoo. While Buakaw has been in bare-knuckle Muay Thai matches and kickboxing in both the Rajadamnern World Series and RIZIN. Under various rulesets, the 41-year-old Thai-born striker had five fights in 2023.
While the current promoter has pulled out, both have working relations with Japan's RIZIN, so the fight could be picked up elsewhere, provided someone is willing to put up the hefty price money.