FILIPINO star Johnriel Casimero finally gets the super fight that he’s been longing for after booking a fight with Japanese ring icon Naoya Inoue in a unification fight on April 24, 2020 (US time) in Las Vegas.
“It’s a very big fight for me,” the 30-year-old Casimero told SunStar Cebu.
Casimero is coming off one of the biggest wins of his career, a third round stoppage of Zolani Tete to win the World Boxing Organization (WBO) bantamweight crown last Nov. 30 in Birmingham, England.
Casimero believes that this is his career-defining moment and he’ll put on a good show for all the fans.
“This is a very good matchup. It’ll be a war,” said Casimero, a three-division world champion.
Before his recent success, Casimero’s career was derailed after he lost to Jonas Sultan in an International Boxing Federation (IBF) super flyweight title eliminator in 2017. After the loss, Casimero took some time off and returned in 2018. In 2019, he won the interim WBO bantamweight belt with a 12th round knockout of Ricardo Espinosa Franco, and defended it with a 10th round stoppage of Cesar Juarez, before beating Tete.
The 26-year-old Inoue is the best bantamweight in the world right now, holding the World Boxing Association (WBA), IBF and The Ring titles.
Inoue, however, is coming off the hardest fight of his career against Nonito Donaire Jr.
Inoue beat Donaire Jr. by unanimous decision.
“He (Donaire) did a good job but he wasn’t able to finish him off,” Casimero said.
Casimero wants to shock the world and attempt to knock Inoue out, a feat that 19 others failed to do.
“That’s automatic,” said Casimero after being asked if he’d go for a knockout.
Casimero is 29-4 with 20 knockouts, while Inoue is 19-0 with 16 knockouts. (EKA)