Nacho Beristain claims Juan Manuel Marquez is already in better condition for his upcoming fight with Bradley than his victory over Pacquiao

Ignacio ‘Nacho’ Beristain, Rafael Marquez, Joel Diaz, and Antonio Diaz in Indio, Calif. on Thursday afternoon (Photo: Chris Robinson –

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By Chris Robinson

On Thursday afternoon, esteemed trainer Ignacio ‘Nacho’ Beristain could be found inside of the Indio Boys and Girls Club in the Coachella Valley of California.

Beristain was within reach of his longtime pupil and former two-division champion Rafael Marquez, whom he has reconnected with as he heads into a pivotal clash on Saturday night against Efrain Esquivias at the nearby Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.

After a few moments of discussing some aspects of the Marquez-Esquivias bout, I asked Beristain for a few updates on the training camp of Rafael’s older brother Juan Manuel down in Mexico City.

Juan Manuel is prepping for an Oct. 12 encounter with formidable WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley, who ironically trains out of the same facility that Beristain was present in on Thursday.

Speaking through Golden Boy Promotions PR Director Ramiro Gonzales, Beristain highlighted his charge’s physical state of being pristine despite the fight with Bradley still over a month away.

“In excellent condition,” stated the modest trainer. “I think, right now, he’s surpassed the condition he had when he fought [Manny] Pacquiao the last fight.”

Marquez, of course, scored his biggest victory as a professional last December when he stopped Pacquiao in the sixth round of a harrowing firefight inside of the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

One of the reasons for Marquez’s new physique and conditioning has been the addition of embattled strength and conditioning coach Angel Heredia to his team in late 2011.

Despite Beristain having some uncertainty to the exact drills Heredia is putting Marquez through for this particular camp, he fully recognizes the results that are being produced.

“I don’t want to say in the corner, because he’s not a corner man,” said Beristain of Heredia. “But whatever he does, whatever exercises, are working perfectly for Juan Manuel.”

In Bradley, Marquez will find himself up against a resilient, durable, and athletic champion who will be fighting for his life to hold on to hit title.

Beristain recognizes how competitive the fight will likely be yet seems to find one key strength resting in Marquez’s favor.

“I don’t want to say we have an advantage,” Beristain explained. “This is an even fight. The only thing I can say is the technique. And thanks to God, we’ve been getting the victories from Marquez’s technique over the other fighters’ technique. We’ve been having success against them, so I think the technique is going to be big one more time.”

Check out more of Chris Robinson’s exclusive coverage from the boxing world below…

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‘Cuty’ Barrera on moving Matthysse’s camp to Indio, assessing Danny Garcia, sparring partners, more


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