Zamboanga City, Southern Philippines, August 2010
In what could very well be the final sighting of another Filipino boxing legend,Gerry Penalosa displayed uncanny boxing savvy and punching precision, as he blasted Thai Yodsaenkeng Kiatmangmee into submission, scoring a 4th round TKO victory.
Turning back the hands of time, Penalosa, 38, unleashed a methodical body assault, throwing spear-like body punches starting the 2nd round. It was a fitting final showcase of Penalosa’s ring talents. He showed glimpses of his vast arsenal. Aside from the punches that he connected with the precision of a Swiss watch, he also showed great ring generalship and the trademark fortress-like defense. The bobbing and weaving, fancy footworks, shot fakes and occasional windmill punch were on full display to the delight of the thousands of boxing fans in attendance at the 7000-seater Zamboanga City Coliseum . Penalosa is known as arguably the best technical boxer the Philippines has ever produced.
In the middle of the 4th round, Penalosa punctuated his two decades of exemplary ring wizardry by unloading a vicious right to the liver of the Thai, followed by a crippling left straight to the bread basket. The Thai turned his back, staggered in the direction of his corner, and dropped on his knees. Gasping for air, the 23 year old Kiatmangmee vomited twice, as he was being revived by his cornermen.
Penalosa’s impressive performance, lifted out of a vintage Penalosa boxing video clip of year’s past, showed the revered boxing icon at his best to the very end.
Starting cautiously, Gerry used the 1st round to study his opponent, whose style he is unfamiliar with, and shake off some of the rust created by a 7 month lay-off. He lost a controversial 12 round split decision to Puerto Rican Eric Morel in his last fight last February for the WBO Bantamweight crown.
However, in the 2nd round, Penalosa started the fireworks that would signal the start of Zamboanga City’s week-long Fiesta de la Virgen del Pilar, dropping powerful bombs to the Thai’s body. Gerry later admitted that he would have wanted the fight to last longer to bring more excitement and please the fans who witnessed the biggest boxing card ever assembled in the city.
In the supporting bouts of the card promoted by Cong.Erbie Fabian’s Black Stallion’s Promotion’s, Cebu’s Jimrex Jaca scored a 6th round TKO win over China’s Hao Han. Michael Farenas, Penalosa’s protege, sent Thai Sangpetch Patanakan three times to the canvas en route his 1st round TKO victory.
In an interview with Penalosa, he thanked his family, friends, and all the fans who supported him in a career that has brought him 2 world championships. He won his first championship in 1996 (WBC Superflyweight) and his second in 2007 (WBO Bantamweight). His ring record now stands at 55-8-2 [37 KO’s]. He also gave special mention to people who has helped him chart a successful boxing career Tony Aldeguer, Wakee Salud, Atty Rudy Salud and Freddie Roach, his managers. He also thanked his patron and avid supporter Amb.Danding Cojuangco and very close friend Cong.Manny Pacquaio.