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Vazquez ready for Gesta challenge

By Rob Smith: IBF lightweight champion Miguel Vazquez (32-3, 13 KO’s) will be making his fifth defense of his title on Saturday night against #5 IBF Mercito Gesta (26-0-1, 14 KO’s) on the undercard of the Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez card.

Vazquez, 5’10”, doesn’t have the speed or power that the 25-year-old Gesta possess. But what Vazquez does have his height, reach and defensive skills that make him really hard to hit. He’s going to have a four inch reach advantage and a three inch height advantage over Gesta and that’s going to make things really tough for Gesta in this fight.

Gesta does really well against guys with limited movement that just stand and trade punches all night. Vazquez isn’t going to do that, as his style is to move, jab and counter.

Gesta, 25, is a Top Rank promoted fighter that Bob Arum is really high on. He thinks he can turn him into a star. It’s unclear if he’s going to be able to do that because Gesta doesn’t look nearly as good as WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner or WBO champ Ricky Burns.

However, perception is reality and if Arum can get Gesta this belt then it’s clear sailing for at least a year for Gesta, because as long Arum keeps Gesta away from Burns, Broner, Richard Abril, as well as Antonio DeMarco, Gesta can beat most of the other guys. He could become a star even without facing a serious test. Gesta has a large following in the Filipino community, and that means he’s going to have a lot of people tuning in each time he fights no matter who Arum matches him up against.

“I’m going to show you what I’m made of. You’re a great fighter, but you’re not invincible…If you feel you can beat me then come and get it.”