John Riel Casimero scored a third round TKO win over Duke Micah to successfully defend the WBO bantamweight title for the first time Sunday morning Manila time in Uncasville, Connecticut.
Casimero knocked down the Ghanaian-born Micah in the second round with a left hook to the temple before continuing the onslaught in the third, forcing referee Steve Willis to stop the fight held without fans at the Mohegan Sun Arena at 0:54.
It was a dominant win for Casimero, who improved his ring record to 30 wins and four defeats after appearing for the first time in front of a US pay-per-view audience.
The Casimero-Micah fight was in the undercard of a Showtime doubleheader featuring the Charlo twins in separate world title bouts.
In beating Micah, Casimero set himself up for a potential clash with Japanese Naoya Inoue, who is scheduled to take on New Zealand’s Jason Moloney on Oct. 31.
The 30-year-old native of Ormoc also dealt Micah his first loss in 13 professional fights.