Johnriel Casimero ready for title defense

Published September 26, 2020, 12:51 PM

by Jonas Terrado

Johnriel casimero
WBO bantamweight champion John Riel Casimero (left) and Duke Micah pose for photos after their weigh-in Saturday in Uncasville, Connecticut.

Johnriel Casimero made weight on the eve of his WBO bantamweight title defense against challenger Duke Micah of Ghana at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.

Casimero, defending the belt for the first time, tipped the scales at 117 3/4 lbs during Saturday morning Manila time’s weigh-in while Micah came in at 117 1/4 lbs.

Betting odds favor the 30-year-old Casimero, who hopes to deal Micah his first professional defeat and use it as a springboard for a future fight against Japanese Naoya Inoue.

The Ormoc native and Inoue were supposed to fight during the summer but the COVID-19 pandemic cancelled those plans. Inoue is set to face Kiwi Jason Moloney on Halloween night in Las Vegas.

Casimero, with a record of 29 wins and four defeats, is eager to put on an impressive showing in front of an American pay-per-view audience as the fight will be the undercard of Showtime’s doubleheader featuring the Charlo brothers.

Jermall Charlo seeks to retain his WBC middleweight crown against Ukranian Sergiy Derevyanchenko while twin brother Jermell faces Dominican Republc’s Jeison Rosario for the WBC and IBF light middleweight and WBA super welterweight championship.

Micah is out to spoil Casimero’s quest as he stakes his unbeaten record of 12-0, all by way of knockouts.