Gerry Penalosa: Tune Up Fight Could Make or Break Chances Against Lopez

John Louie RamosSenior Writer IFebruary 20, 2009

There's no other option but to win.

Today in Cebu city, Philippines' WBO Bantamweight Champion, Gerry "Fearless" Penalosa will be up against German Meraz in a fight that is labeled as his tune-up before going up against WBO Superbantamweight King, Juan Manuel Lopez.

Meraz (20-11-1, 8KO's) is a club fighter in Mexico and is not expected to be much of a problem for the veteran tactician Penalosa (56-6-2, 36KO's).

The fight would determine Penalosa's chances against the heralded knockout artist from Puerto Rico, Lopez.

Looking ahead, at 36-years-old, the scheduled fight with Lopez on April could be Penalosa's last chance for boxing immortality, and it will definitely line him up for bigger paydays in the future.

Perhaps the biggest test of Penalosa's long and illustrious career, never has the veteran faced a fighter like Lopez, who is much younger, much taller, much stronger, and much faster.

Lopez also holds first-round knockout victories over world class opposition, most notably against former world champion Daniel Ponce de leon.

In spite of it all, the tune up fight today with Meraz should not be taken for granted. Meraz has nothing to lose and everything to gain, while Penalosa might lose his bid against Lopez.

Lopez-Penalosa is great, but we still have Penalosa-Meraz on hand.