Pe?alosa Knocks Out Martinez
By Winchell Campos
Mon, 23 Oct 2006
EL PASO, Texas--“The New” Gerry Pe?alosa showed why he still deserves another shot at a world title when he knocked out top rated Mauricio Martinez in the ninth round at the Don Haskins Center here.
Despite fighting with a swollen left hand as a result of his powerful delivery of a straight that knocked down Martinez right at the end of the first round, Pe?alosa showed the heart of a champion and the vast experience that won him the WBC super flyweight crown nine and a half years ago.
Pe?alosa cut his Panamanian opponent’s right eye in the third, scoring effectively with right hooks and sparingly dishing out his left straights. He also knocked down the durable Martinez in the fourth, using his potent right hand right in front of his new promoter Oscar De La Hoya of Golden Boy Promotions.
Pe?alosa, now fighting at 118 lbs., scored his 51st victory and his 34th knockout in a career that spanned 17 years but still, his skill and defense impressed a huge crowd here as well as his good friend Manny Pacquiao who watched via pay-per-view television.
Pacquiao, who was instrumental in convincing Pe?alosa to make a comeback and dream of another world title, promised to give the San Carlos City native a sizeable amount as his bonus even before he faced Martinez.
“Talagang inspired ako sa ensayo at sa laban na ito sa tulong ng pamilya ko at mga kaibigan. I offer this victory to God and my countrymen,” said Pe?alosa, who brought with him his wife Goody and in-laws to this border city west of Texas.
With Hall of Fame trainer-turned-manager Freddie Roach and corner man Buboy Fernandez mapping out a game plan that negated Martinez’s vaunted jab-straight punches, Pe?alosa unleashed a barrage of punches in the ninth capped by a straight to the body and to the head that knocked Martinez out cold.
Also ecstatic with the win was Raides Neri of Davao, who helped out in the pre-fight conditioning as well as the nutritional diet that made Penalosa’s comeback a reality. Pe?alosa, who was cloistered in the apartment of Pacquiao and his brother Bobby as well as other boxers Ernel Fontanilla and Diosdado Gabi, thinks he could still win another world title.
“I will enjoy a brief vacation with my family but I will return back to training camp soon, maybe before the end of the year. I might get the chance to challenge for the world title and that depends on my manager (Roach) and promoter (Golden Boy Promotions),” said Pe?alosa.
Daniel Ponce De Leon successfully defended his WBO super bantamweight title against Al Seeger in the main event and he might be Pe?alosa’s next opponent.
Pe?alosa is coming off a unanimous decision win over lanky Mexican Tomas Rojas last July in Manila while Martinez has won 12 of his last 13 fights.
Click here to view a list of other articles written by Winchell Campos.
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