Ashanti is confirmed to perform the national anthem during the highly anticipated rematch between boxing champ Manny Pacquiao and undefeated two-division world champion Timothy Bradley Jr, which is taking place next month.
Last month, the singer was personally offered the opportunity after recently sitting next to Pacquiao at a New York Knicks game at Madison Square Garden.
“I’m such a huge fan of Manny Pacquiao! I have family in the boxing business — Howard Davis, Jr. and Dyah Davis,” said Ashanti in a statement. “When I found out we were sitting next to each other courtside at the Knicks game, I said to my dad, ‘We should take a picture!’ I told Manny I was a big fan and was so excited when he asked me to sing the national anthem at his upcoming fight and I can’t wait. I actually love boxing!”
She adds, “Manny’s such a champion and I can’t wait to cheer him on!”
Pacquiao comments, “I told her I was a big fan and asked her if she would sing the U.S. national anthem at my fight against Timothy Bradley. She quickly checked her schedule and then said she could and she would. The Knicks may have lost that night but I felt like the biggest winner in the world when I walked out of Madison Square Garden.”
The boxers will go head-to-head for the World Boxing Organization welterweight title, Saturday, April 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event will air live beginning at 9 p.m. ET on HBO Pay-Per-View.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio