A 22-year-old Filipino boxer who competed on Manny Pacquiao’s TV show Step by step, died after a four-day coma. Kenneth Egano, who fought on Saturday, died Wednesday of a brain hemorrhage.
Egano collapsed in the ring after his eight-round bantamweight bout with Jason Falcurin, where he was declared the winner by decision.
Manny Pacquiao’s TV show boxer collapses
The fight took place in the town of Imus in Cavite province, an hour’s drive south of the country’s capital, Metro Manila. As seen in the video below, it was a shootout between the two young fighters. They didn’t hesitate at all to trade blows and left nothing behind. Unfortunately, Egano got the rough end of the case.
During the reading of the decision, Egano is seen briefly collapsing and unable to stand on his own two feet. He was then propped up in a chair and given an oxygen mask.
In the other, closer angle of the clip, people around can be heard calling for a doctor as Egano’s cornermen tried to help him up. Another person was heard saying Egano ate way too many punches.
“The other fighter passed out. Oh my god,” another person says on the video in Filipino.
Egano was then laid on a stretcher and taken to the nearest hospital, where he fought for his life for the next few days. His boxing record is 7-1.
Regulatory Board clears Manny Pacquiao and ‘Blow-by-Blow’
An investigation was then carried out by the Games and Amusement Board (GAB), the country’s governing body for professional sports. According to a report by local outlet Rappler, GAB concluded that “there was no lag in booking the fight.”
As for Manny Pacquiao and “Blow-by-Blow,” GAB said there was no negligence in the immediate medical procedures performed on Egano at the time. According to Rappler, GAB Chairman Richard Clarin said in a later interview that said incident was “only part of the inherent dangers of boxing to human lives”.
Boxing deaths under the ‘Blow-by-Blow’ banner
Blow-by-Blow, a TV show that features promising young boxers in the Philippines, originally aired in 1994 and was later revived by Manny Pacquiao’s MP Promotions in 2015. And sadly, Egano’s death n is not the first under the Blow by Blow banner.
In 1995, featherweight Eugene Barutag was matched against veteran journeyman Randy Andagan. Barutag dominated the first four rounds and was close to ending the fight by knockout. Andagan, however, caught a second wind and turned the script around.
Likewise, Barutag collapsed after the eight-round fight. And due to the lack of a competent ring doctor and emergency medical team at the time, a media van rushed him to a nearby hospital. Barutag was pronounced dead upon arrival.
Manny Pacquiao promised to cover Egano’s medical bills
Upon hearing the news, Manny Pacquiao offered to pay Egano’s medical bills. The boxing legend was in his hometown of General Santos at the time and later said, “there is nothing more precious than human life.”
A former ‘Blow-by-Blow’ student himself, Pacquiao is said to have instructed his Manila-based staff to ensure Egano receives all appropriate care.
Pacquiao also grapples with his own fight, this time in the courtroom. The former senator and presidential candidate from the Philippines recently lost his legal battle with Paradigm Sports, the management of Conor McGregor, who sued him for breach of contract. Pacquiao is ordered to pay $5.1 million.
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