By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Undefeated Filipino southpaw Mercito “No Mercy” Gesta (22-0-1, 12 KO’s) has sparred with former world champions Paul Malignaggi (WBO/IBF light welterweight), Jorge Linares (WBC featherweight/WBO super featherweight) and Shane Mosley and is now “ready to go” according to his trainer Vince Parra.
Gesta battles American Manuel Perez (16-6-1, 4 KO’s) at the BlueWater Resort and Casino in Parker, Arizona on September 17.
After working out for two weeks at Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles and sparring with three former world champions Parra said he was “satisfied with the quality” and decided to return to their home base for some light work and “working on technique.”
Parra told the Inquirer that Gesta “feels great and finished off last week with some light sparring with a couple of amateurs in the gym and just keeping his conditioning right and his diet. He is right on track and is about two pounds off his weight and I’m very happy about that.”
His trainer who also serves as his assistant manager said Gesta “is focused and ready to put on a good show for the fans” even as he realized that he’s featured in the main event of Top Rank which will be covered “live” in the US.
He said the fact that the fight will also be telecast in the Philippines by ABS-CBN “is a big thing naturally and we are sure his father (Anecito) and his mother (Mercedes) I’m sure will be having a big party in the neighborhood so Mercito is looking forward to it.” Parra said he “expects complete domination by Mercito” against Perez.
Parra described the sparring with Mosley as “a great experience for Mercito. We weren’t really sure what to expect but he surprisingly showed a lot of veteran moves, he showed a little bit of speed and Mercito was right there with him. They traded punches and it was good.”
When he sparred with Linares, Parra said Gesta made the mistake of “starting off fighting his fight and boxing his style. Jorge is a very proficient and skilled fighter and Mercito had a little bit of difficulty in the few rounds but he equalized with his power and hurt Linares to the body.” He said they were “six, very high-paced, high-volume rounds and it was about even.”
Gesta went four rounds with Malignaggi who is not known as a heavy puncher and handled him well. Parra said they would leave on Thursday afternoon for the four hour drive to Parker, Arizona.