Olivia "The Predator" Gerula was born on May 1,
1979 in Brampton, Ontario, Canada. In the summer of
1980, her family moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba.
She was always active, and started out in soccer and track. At age eight,
she was the top goal scorer on the Kildonan Community Soccer Team and helped
to lead them to the first girls' championship. Her soccer career ended
with the provincial championship in Toronto with the Kilcona Select Team.
Olivia also enjoyed three years of
gymnastics, competing at a high level. She excelled at the sport but told
WBAN "after having minor surgery on
my wrist, I was no longer able to compete in gymnastics."
Growing up with two older brothers made Olivia competitive ... she was
always interested in traditional male sports and this weighed heavily in her
decision to get into Martial Arts, then into Kickboxing and eventually into
Boxing. she said,
"I chose a gym called Sik-Tai. After checking out a kickboxing class of guys
only, my mother was concerned I’d get hurt. So we compromised with martial
arts instead. I loved it----couldn’t get enough of it. I started staying
later and later until I was training both martial arts and kickboxing
classes." She competed in martial arts but found it didn't
challenge her abilities enough. "My
trainer went to bat for me and my mom agreed to let me train and compete in
kickboxing", she says. Because of her previous sports involvements, Olivia
developed very strong leg muscles to go with flexibility from her
gymnastics. Both qualities made her the ideal kickboxing candidate when she
took up the sport in 1994.
Olivia won a few amateur titles,
and then decided to go pro in 1996. She admits that she got very
frustrated with not being able to get much action as a pro kickboxer.
After winning five straight bouts, the 18-year old Olivia was
KO'd by world champion Bridgett Riley, her only kickboxing loss.
On June 21, 1997 at the PNE
Agrodome in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Sarah Schmedding and
Para Draine of Spokane, Washington
defeated Olivia and Tara Morneau of Vancouver in a Tag Team Boxing
exhibition with one six-minute round.
In 1997, Olivia’s gym received a call for her to fight as a
pro boxer. "Scary, because at the time I wasn’t all that good with my hands. My legs
were the heart and soul of my fighting", she remembers.
But, regardless of how she felt about her hands versus her feet, she won
that first pro fight on October 4, 1997 in
Rochester, Minnesota, taking a four-round decision over Christina Berry of
Lacrosse, Wisconsin, who fell to 1-2 with the loss.
On October 14, 1997 in Boise, Idaho, Olivia (156½ lbs) lost a
four-round unanimous (40-36,40-37,40-36) decision to her former tag team
opponent Sarah Schmedding (5'7",
144 lbs) of Green Acres, Washington who improved her own pro record to 2-0.
On January 24, 1998 at the Hotel
Bismarck in Bismarck, North Dakota,
Olivia scored a four-round unanimous (40-36) decision over
Mandan, North Dakota's Ragan Pudwill, who fell to 1-4.
On March 27, 1998
at the Tacoma Dome In Tacoma,
Washington, Olivia (142½ lbs) held former WIBF
welterweight champion Diana Dutra (137¾ lbs) to a draw over four
rounds. Dutra's record was 3-1-1.
On May 8, 1998 in Red Deer,
Alberta, Canada, Olivia (137 lbs) won a five-round split (48-47,48-47,46-49) decision over
pro debuter Cathy Boyes (135 lbs) of
Kamloops, British Columbia. All five rounds were hard fought and evenly
contested, and the fight was described
to me as "just an old fashioned slugfest throughout".
On July 31, 1998 at the Tropicana
in Atlantic City. New Jersey, Kathy Collins of
Plainview, New York won a ten-round unanimous decision over Olivia, moving
her pro record to 11-0-3.
Olivia against Fredia Gibbs in 1998
On September 17, 1998 at the Grand
Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi, Fredia Gibbs (134
Studio City, California won
a ten-round unanimous decision over Olivia (135 lbs). Gibbs improved her pro
boxing record to 5-1-0 (2 KO's) with the win.
On April 17, 1999
at the Tropicana in Atlantic City
Kathy Collins won an eight-round rematch with Olivia
by a unanimous (80-72, 80-72, 79-73) decision.
"I was a lot sharper this time than the last time we fought," Kathy told the press
after this fight. "I hit her some real solid shots." For her part, Gerula had won the crowd over with her willingness to trade with Collins, and the
lop-sided decision was greeted with boos. Collins improved her record to 12-1-3
On June 12, 1999 at the Shriner's Auditorium in Wilmington,
Massachusetts IWBF junior lightweight champion
Melissa Salamone (139 lbs) of Miami, Florida won an eight-round
unanimous decision over Olivia (140 lbs), improving her pro record to
to kickboxing on June 18, 1999 at the Winnipeg Convention Centre, winning a
four round unanamous decision over Emily McCain of St. Louis, Missouri.
On April 7, 2001, Olivia returned to the ring to face former
US national amateur champion Dakota Stone of Seattle, Washington at the
Coeur d'Alene Casino in Worley, Idaho. Olivia says that she was anxious to prove to
herself that she was still in the game. Dakota Stone (5'10") weighed in
at 157 lbs while Olivia came in at 160 lbs and lost a four-round unanimous
(40-36,40-36,40-36) decision. Stone improved her record to 3-1-1 with
August 10, 2003 at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Washington, Olivia
(135 lbs) knocked out Laramie Hinostroza (5' 5½", 133¾ lbs) of Emporia,
Kansas in the first round of a scheduled four-rounder. Hinostroza fell to
4-2 (2 KO's) with this loss.
On September 18, 2003 at Four Bears Casino, Newtown, North Dakota,
Olivia (141¼ lbs) fought Mia St. John (139 lbs) to a six-round majority draw.
St. John's record moved to 28-3-2 with the draw.
Olivia vs Betty Stephens in March 2004
© Copyrighted photo by Mary Ann Owen of BILV
On March 26, 2004 at Fort Cheyenne Casino in North Las Vegas,
Nevada, Olivia (135½ lbs) won a six-round unanimous (60-54,60-54,60-54)
decision over Betty Stephens (135 lbs) of Salt Lake City, Utah.
Olivia used her height and reach advantage i this fight to pop
the shorter Stephens with left jabs and rights as Stephens tried to
work her way inside to brawl. The early rounds saw Stephens rushing in
with thought of defense, making her an easy target for Olivia, who
snapped Stephens's head back with right hands that quickly reddened
the face of the game brawler. Stephens had ome success with looping shots
to the head and body, but Olivia's counter punching took its toll and
Stephens was fading badly by the third round. With little left in her
gas tank Stephens was forced to stay outside until she could regain a burst of
energy while Olivia worked her over with crisp, clean, rights. Stephens
fell to 2-1 with the loss. For more photos by Mary Ann Owen and video clips
of this bout see MPEG/Photo Gallery #158 on the WBAN Records Member Site.
Jessica Rakoczy vs Olivia in July 2004
© Copyrighted photo taken by Jessica Trevino
On July 1,
2004 at the Palace Indian Gaming Center in Lemoore, California, expatriate
Canadian Jessica Rakoczy (134 lbs) won an eight-round unanimous (80-72,80-72,79-73) decision over
Olivia (133½ lbs). Rakoczy was
"too fast and too accurate" for Olivia according to a ringside
correspondent, and advanced her pro record to 16-1-0 (4 KO's) with the win.
For more photos and video clips of this bout see
MPEG/Photo Gallery #185 on the WBAN Records Member Site.
On September 24, 2004 at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Jelena
Mrdjenovich (130 lbs) of Edmonton started slow, got behind, then knocked out Olivia
(128 lbs) at 1:13 in the fourth round of a scheduled six-rounder. Olivia fell straight back
onto the canvas from a left hook, hit her head on the canvas, and needed several minutes
to recover. Mrdjenovich improved to 7-0-0 (5 KO) with the win, dropping Olivia
to 5-8-2 with her first loss by KO.
"It took me three rounds to get going," said Mrdjenovich, "but I
cracked at the end of the third and if I'd have had two more seconds, I could
have ended it right there. In the fourth, I knew she was hurt. I hit her with a
clean hit right and then followed the second with a left hook and that was it."
On September 23, 2006 at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg,
Manitoba, Olivia (127 lbs) stopped Amanda Carriere (129½ lbs) of Edmonton at
1:55 in the second round of a scheduled four-rounder. The bout featured good
action that brought the crowd to its feet but Gerula was the stronger and
finally dropped Carriere on the way to the TKO win.
"This was a tremendous win for me
after an enforced two-year lay off and I plan to repeat the performance as
often as I can", said Gerula. Carriere, a former Canadian national amateur bronze medalist, fell to 5-1-1
(2 KO's) with her first pro loss
January 26, 2007 at the Convention Center in
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada Olivia (128½
lbs) won by a six-round unanimous decision over Olga Heron (128½
lbs). Olivia told WBAN: "The plan was to out box her and not get sucked
into brawling and it worked beautifully. She had a lot more boxing skill
then anyone gave her credit for which made for an entertaining fight. As
mentioned in the press release the fight will be air on pay-per-view for all
to judge and enjoy. I'll be interested to see whether anyone agrees with
Olga's opinion that 'home town' judging was in my favor. Mind you that would
definitely be a switch for me. Anyhow the fight felt great and after
finishing the first 6 round fight I've had in over 3 years I was really to
go another 6. I'm working on signing another fight in March."
Olivia improved her record to 7-8-2 (2 KO's) while Heron fell to 4-9 (1 KO).
Maureen Shea vs Olivia Gerula in Reno, NV
© Copyrighted photo taken by Mary Ann Owen
On July 6, 2007 in front of 1,500 fans in an outdoor parking lot at the
Eldorado Hotel and Casino in Reno, Nevada,.
Maureen Shea (126 lbs) of New York City won a convincing six-round unanimous
(60-54,60-54,59-55) decision over Olivia (128 lbs). Shea took control of the bout with a strong body attack in the first
three rounds. "She said to me after the fight that I was a lot better
than she expected," Shea told reporters, "the body shots
were definitely working. I feel like I could've done a little better.
Fighting outdoors for the first time, I'd probably give myself a 9½."
Shea improved her record to 11-0-0 (5 KO's) while Gerula fell to 7-9-2 (2 KO's)
with the loss.
(For more photos of the fight by Mary Ann Owen, see WBAN
Photo Gallery #435 on the WBAN
Records Member Site).
Olivia Gerula vs Sosadea Razo in Las Vegas, NV
© Copyrighted photo taken by Mary Ann Owen
On August 24, 2007 at the Orleans Hotel and
Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, Olivia (128½ lbs) picked her shots in a four round
fight against Sosadea Razo (130 lbs) of California. Razo tagged Gerula a few
times but it did not faze Gerula, Gerula came back landing combinations
incorporating some good lateral movement on the way to a victory that moved her
record to 8-9-2 (2 KOs). The 31-year-old Razo
fell to 5-9-0 (1 KOs).
Sandy Tsagouris (l) avoids a right from Olivia Gerula
© Copyrighted photo taken by Durell Wambolt
On October 13, 2007 at the Powerade Centre in
Brampton, Ontario, Canada, Sandy Tsagouris (128 lbs) of Brampton remained
undefeated when she defeated Olivia (128 lbs), by an eight round majority
(76-76,77-75,77-75) decision for the vacant Canadian Boxing Federation (CBF)
Female Super Featherweight title. According to Shawn McWilliams of FightNews
Canada, "Both fighters entered the ring looking focused and determined.
Tsagouris had ... success ... scoring points on nice counter punching and
punishing her opponent with a stiff and constant jab . Olivia's offence was
mounted scoring the majority of her points with sporadic straight right hands
and right hooks. Both ladies fought hard and did not give an inch. The fight's
end saw both women bloodied and was entertaining wire to wire. This is a
benchmark in women's boxing here in Canada and hopefully is to be the beginning
of many exciting bouts in the future." The win improved Tsagouris'
record to 7-0 (3 KO's) while Gerula slipped to 8-10-2 (2 KO's). Tsagouris
had been ranked #10 at featherweight before the fight by WBAN, while
Gerula was ranked #18 at junior lightweight. For more photos of the
fight by Durell Wambolt, see WBAN
Photo Gallery #448 on the WBAN
Records Member Site.
On October 24, 2008 at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg, Olivia (133 lbs) won
by a TKO at the end of the fourth round over Monique Duval (131½ lbs) of
Oakville, Ontario, who fell to 0-5 with the loss. Duval's nose was bloodied and
she went to her corner and referee
Bill Tibbs stopped the contest on the advice of Duval's corner.
On March 3, 2009 at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan, Olivia Gerula
defeated Japan's Fujin Raika [aka: Emiko Raika] by an
eight round split decision (78-77, 78-76, and 76-77). Joe Koizumi
told FightNews.com: "Olivia Gerula made a good display of her shifty footwork and accurate shots to win
an upset split but well-received decision over Raika over eight two-minute rounds
... Gerula landed light but
accurate punches from Hamed-like angles, busily moving side-to-side, to and
fro, all the way. Olivia, four years her junior at 29, outspeeded and
outclassed the hard-hitting but slower Raika ,,, despite her continual nose-bleeding caused by an accidental butt in
WBAN was told, "In what
was scored a close fight. Team Gerula feels there was a much bigger gap and
while taking the brunt of several unintentional head butts remained focussed on
their objective to out box and not get caught in wild exchanges. Gerula was able
to get the punches off first and used lateral movement to take away Raika's
aggressiveness and power."
“One judge actually scored in her favour, which just about
gave me a heart attack. I was like, ‘No, I can’t lose this fight’ because it was
a clear win on my part,” Gerula
Toews of Canstar News, adding “I was surprised she didn’t have more
power behind her hits. I expected it to be a little harsher than what it was,
but I was not surprised to get the head butts that I got.” In an
interview on the way to Tokyo, Gerula had
fully intended to return looking like a boxer. "I actually thought I’d look a
whole lot worse. I was kinda disappointed.”
Raika fell to
18-5-1 (6 KO's) with her
second straight loss at home.
On April 9, 2009 in front of a sold-out house at the Shaw
Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Olivia (127½
lbs) won a ten-round unanimous (97-94,97-94,96-95) decision over
Jelena Mrdjenovich (129 lbs) of Edmonton for the
WBC Super Featherweight world title. Gerula came out aggressively and outhustled
the home-standing Mrdjenovich, who looked tired after the early rounds and was
unable to mount a sufficient comeback after her corner told her she would need a
KO to win the fight. By contrast,
Gerula was smiling between the rounds, apparently confident that her fight plan
was working. Mrdjenovich's trainer Milan Lubovac was
unhappy with his fighter's performance,
saying "We can't blame this one on the judges or the referee; my fighter
just didn't fight. She was breathing through her mouth after two rounds. What
does that tell you? She didn't do her running to get ready and she was
complacent in the gym. She didn't want to pay the price that a champion has to
pay. Jelena has all the talent in the world, but that means nothing if you
choose not to put it to use. That was her choice tonight. I knew after the
fourth round she couldn't win unless she got a KO, but she didn't go for it. Her
heart wasn't in it after she ran out of gas. She's going to have to decide if
she still wants to pay the price, or call it a day." Gerula's trainer
Mark Collins was delighted with Olivia's performance,
saying "She simply outworked her from the get-go. Her movement,
feinting and constant pressure simply brought down Jelena and by the time the
ninth round rolled around Jelena had nothing left."
"It was an amazing fight,"
said Gerula. "I was aggressive from the very beginning. She tried to land
that famous left hook of hers and she landed a few. But I’ve learned to cover up
and take some punches. I had her in trouble... she did hit the canvas once but
they called it a slip. I had her tired and backed up and she was holding. It was
a war and it was great. This is the payoff for all the years I’ve put in, all
that time and effort. This is what it’s all about." Mrdjenovich fell to
23-4-1 (11 KOs).
Olivia Gerula lands a right on Myriam Chomaz
© Copyrighted photo taken by Mary Ann Owen
On December 17, 2009 at Halle Carpentier in Paris, France, Olivia (127¾ lbs) won
a 10-round majority (95-95,96-94,97-93) decision over WBC Interim Junior
Lightweight Champion Myriam Chomaz (129¾ lbs) of France to unify the WBC Junior
Lightweight title. Gerula and Chomaz went toe to toe in almost every
round, with Gerula winning most exchanges. Chomaz ended the fight with swelling
under her right eye and a bruised left cheek but Gerula was not noticeably
marked and apparently had the better of more rounds than she was credited with
by two judges. Chomaz suffered
her second pro loss, dropping to 12-2 (7 KOs). For more photos of the bout by
Mary Ann Owen see MPEG/Photo Gallery #530 on the WBAN Records Member Site.
Olivia Gerula was named WBAN Fighter of the Year for 2009 in recognition of her
three on-the-road wins over world class opponents, as well as Fighter of the
Month for January 2010 in recognition of her belt unification win over Chomaz.
8, 2010 at the Winnipeg Convention Center, Olivia (127 lbs)
won a ten-round unanimous (98-92, 98-92, 97-93)
over Brooke Dierdorff (127 lbs) of Illinois
defending her WBC Junior Lightweight title. Gerula started slowly but came
on strong in the later rounds after bloodying Dierdorff's nose in the fifth
round. “I always start slow," she
the WInnipeg Sun's Kirk Penton. “I’ve always been a slow starter. I always
kind of feel it out. I wanted to see what her power’s like, too, so I kind of
got a feel for that — and a little bit of ear ringing on the side, too. Other
than that, it was pretty good. She slowed down after about the fifth
because she got tired, and I capitalized on that. I knew she was leaning
on me because she was tired. So the trick was to get out and try to hit the
shots. I just had a little hard time getting that until the end." Dierdorff fell to 6-5-1 (3
On November 27, 2010 at Johanneshov, Stockholm, Sweden, Frida Wallberg (128½
lbs) of Gothenburg, Sweden took on Olivia Gerula (128 lbs) for the WBC
Junior Lightweight title. There were several controversial aspects to
this fight. First, the WBC sanctioned an eight-round fight for its
world title in deference to Swedish rules which for many years had
banned professional boxing altogether and only recently allowed women's
competition with limits to the lengths of the fights. (The last 8-round
fight in Sweden had been in 1967). Second, the "historic"
fight's unanimous (77-75,78-75,78-75) decision for the home-standing
Frida was controversial. Gerula, who had negotiated a 10-round rematch outside Sweden into her fight contract told WBAN "I believe I
have just played a part in a much bigger picture and now the WBC will again
make progressive history with the 10 round rematch clause that was put into
contract. And it is my only conciliation that when the rematch takes place
this decision will be put to rights!" Frida Wallberg improved her pro record to 9-0 (2 KO's) with the decision.
On September 3, 2011 at Karlstad CCC in Karlstad, Sweden, Frida Wallberg
(129 lbs) won a ten-round unanimous (99-91,98-92,98-92) decision over
Olivia (130 lbs) in a rematch for the WBC Junior Lightweight
fight was scrappy and closely fought in most rounds but Wallberg
clearly won several stanzas and also finished stronger with Gerula
against the ropes. Gerula told WBAN: "The fight did not go as planned but not for lack of trying. I
lost. The fight was still a mess but this time she deserved to
win. I can walk away from this loss disappointed but not
devastated and the only thing hurt is my pride. So from here
it's a couple weeks off, time with the family and then back to
the gym. Thank you everyone for all the support." Gerula’s record fell to 13-12-2 (3 KO) while Wallberg remained undefeated at 10-0 (2 KO's).
Jelena Mrdjenovich stands over fallen Olivia Gerula
© copyrighted photo by Guhdar Photography
On December 9, 2011 at the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta Jelena Mrdjenovich
(125¾ lbs) of Edmonton KO'd Olivia (125¼ lbs) at 0:23 in the ninth round
of a scheduled ten-rounder for the WIBA Featherweight title. Mrdjenovich
was ahead by 78-74 on all three scorecards of the open scoring before
she caught Gerula with a perfectly placed left hook to the temple as she closed in.
Gerula hit the canvas face down and was out cold for several
minutes. Mrdjenovich improved to 26-8-1 (13 KO's) with the win. Gerula, who took the fight at a week's notice as a replacement for injured Sarah Pucek, fell
to 13-13-2 (3 KO's).
On May 24, 2013 at
the Westchester County Center in White Plains, New York, USA Ronica
Jeffrey (126 lbs) of New York won the vacant IWBF Junior Lightweight title with a
unanimous (99-91, 99-91,98-92) ten round decision over Olivia Gerula (125¾ lbs). WBAN contributor Bernie McCoy described the fight: "After Jeffrey and Gerula traded the opening two rounds, the new
champion seemed to shift into a different gear in the third
stanza. Jeffrey's fast hands got faster, her in and out movement
got quicker, and her ring speed kept her away from courageous
attempts by Gerula to slow down the new champion with
counterpunching tactics. For the next eight rounds, each two
minute stanza took on a mirror like pattern: Jeffrey constantly
moving around the ring, suddenly, quickly closing on Gerula,
landing head and body shots and just as quickly, moving out of
Gerula's punching range. Gerula, to her credit maintained a
dogged pressure on Jeffrey throughout those eight rounds, and,
at times, managed to force the new champion to the ropes or a
corner, taking the opportunity to land an overhand left hook or
right cross, but the game effort fell short." Jeffrey
improved to 13-0 (1 KO) with the win while Gerula, a several-time
former world champion with a deceptive overall record, fell to 13-14-2
Promoters and matchmakers acknowledge Olivia as an aggressive, exciting
fighter with good stamina. They also recognize that she accepts
challenges that more experienced fighters turn down. Some may
question this path, but Olivia knows that she cannot develop into a top
fighter by competing with less skilled boxers. In order to leave her mark
in the world of Women's Boxing - Olivia "The Predator" will continue to accept matches with
Olivia represents herself and can be contacted through her
Other Olivia Gerula links
To check out fight reports, complete up-to-date boxing records, with huge digital photos you can go to
the WBAN Records Member Site
Friday, August 09, 2013