Boxing trainer Freddie Roach is putting his body on the line to help Manny Pacquiao prepare for his Las Vegas showdown with Floyd Mayweather Junior.
Roach, 55, suffers from Parkinson’s disease but that does not prevent him getting in the ring to spar with his superstar fighters.
Boxing journalist Steve Bunce told UK radio station Talk Sport: “Freddie’s body is starting to collapse, so he pioneers a wearable body-bag.
“He fits himself into a wearable punch bag, which allows people to hit him all over his body, including near the ribs.
“It’s got fantastic padding but he has trained Bernard Hopkins, a light-heavyweight, and Mike Tyson. These guys are whacking him and it has to have an effect. Feddie’s body is as good as gone.”
Roach has been voted a as trainer of the year six times by the Boxing Writers Association of America.
He has previously worked with fighters including Miguel Cotto, Amir Khan and Oscar De La Hoya, all from his humble gym in Hollywood, California.
Bunce said: “He’s got this gym in Hollywood called the Wild Card. It’s in a dreadful part of Hollywood.
“It’s in the sort of area where there’s a loan shark, a guy who sells bad diamonds, a place you can get your nails done.
“You go up the stairs and there’s Freddie Roach’s gym. You don’t want to be there at night.
“He’s been training Pacquiao for all these years and they’ve formed a close bond.
“Some people talk about father and son, well father and son are close through blood – these guys are inseparable two or three times a year for a three-month period.”
Mayweather, 38, and Pacquiao, 36, fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on May 2.
Mayweather’s WBC and WBA welterweight titles and Pacquiao’s WBO belt will be on the line at the MGM Grand.
Mayweather is unbeaten in 47 fights. Sky Bet make the American 25-1 – boosted from 16-1 – to win in rounds 10 to 12.