Filipino boxers

Gesta withdraws from Tanajara fight due to food poisoning

Roy Luarca
All the hard work Mandaue-born Mercito Gesta has put in goes for naught

Mercito Gesta tripped even before he can take a step toward regaining boxing glory.

A victim of food poisoning Wednesday evening, Gesta could not even show up for the official weigh-in Thursday and withdrew from his scheduled lightweight bout with unbeaten prospect Hector Tanajara Jr on Friday, July 24, at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California.

His ring career dimming following a loss and a draw in his last two fights, Gesta was hoping to stun Tanajara in their collision for the World Boxing Organization US National Boxing Council title.

Instead, Gesta suffered another black eye of his own making.

A 16-year pro, he should have taken extra precaution with his food intake hours leading to the weigh-in.

If only Gesta proved true to his Facebook page message on July 20.

“Being extremely cautious as I go into fight week!  Zoom conditioning call with my Strength Coach @glenbeatopt Chris Almazan @neilmacasadia.  Team work!  Have a great Sunday everyone.”

On July 22, he even posted: “2 More Days! #TanajaraGesta Can’t wait!”

Now Gesta has all the time to wait, with nothing to look forward to this year. No paycheck, no hope for a third world title crack.

The Mandaue-born Gesta, now based in San Diego, California, challenged for a world title twice, falling short against Miguel Vasquez in 2012 and Jorge Linares in 2018.

Of course, this is not a dead-end alley for Gesta (32-3, 17 knockouts) and his team led by coach Marvin Somodio.

Hopefully, Golden Boy Promotions will consider Gesta again for another card which is hard to come by owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. –