Arum assures Peñalosa-Lopez fight is on

By RONNIE NATHANIELSZ, abs-cbnNEWS.com

Posted at Feb 24 2009 09:50 PM | Updated as of Feb 25 2009 08:56 AM

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has cleared up the confusion about the upcoming WBO super bantamweight fight between Gerry Peñalosa and Juan Manuel “JuanMa” Lopez in Puerto Rico.

Concerns were aired about the April 25 match as Peñalosa has yet to receive the contract.

Arum made the assurance that the fight is on, saying that he had sent a contract to Golden Boy Promotions which handles Peñalosa because the fight was negotiated with GBP CEO Richard Schaefer.

He admitted not sending a contract to Peñalosa’s manager Billy Keane who has expressed concern over what was going on.

Arum said he “sent the contract last week to Golden Boy and they now have to do a contract with Peñalosa.” Arum said he had spoken to Golden Boy Promotions vice president and international matchmaker Eric Gomez and told us “he promised to get right to it.”

The Top Rank executive said it was a good thing that people in the US didn’t see the Peñalosa tune-up fight against German Meraz, wherein the Mexican spent the rounds running away from the Filipino.

Arum added that Peñalosa “doesn’t have to worry about “Juanma” because he likes to fight” and would be the aggressor which will suit the Filipino’s counter-punching ability.

When informed of our conversation with Arum, Peñalosa was relieved and said he plans to leave for Los Angeles in the middle of March to pick up the tempo of his training for the Lopez title fight.

Peñalosa, who holds the WBO bantamweight title, meanwhile said he is worried that trainer Freddie Roach may not have the time to coach him since he is training Manny Pacquiao for the Ricky Hatton fight on May 2 and Amir Khan for his clash with Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera on March 14.