Casimero’s defense at home hinges on TV networks

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Wednesday, January 9, 2013


INTERNATIONAL Boxing Federation (IBF) light flyweight champion Johnriel Casimero has been fighting on the road in all his past championship bouts.

His promoters Sammy Gello-ani and Sampson Lewkowicz want their young ward to defend his title at home after winning the purse bid last early this month. However, there is one stumbling block for that to come to fruition—a television network that can host this huge world title fight.

“I have talked to Lewkowicz of Sampson Boxing and he is doing his best, too, to bring the fight here in the Philippines. If only TV here in the Philippines can take bold steps to assist promoters, especially world championships, we can have more world champions coming. Most likely the fight will be in March and the final venue will be decided and announced this weekend after we have weighed in fight offers and all possible options for the event,” Gello-ani told Sun.Star Cebu.

Casimero is having his first mandatory title defense against No. 1 contender Luis Rios
of Panama.

If no television network would support the Casimero vs. Rios bout, then the promoters would be forced to stage the fight in a different country.

“A possible TV partner is there but no confirmation yet and we are just waiting for a few days to confirm,” said Gello-ani, the head of SGG Promotions.

Casimero, 17-2 with 10 knockouts, has fought all his world title bouts outside the Philippines in Mexico twice, Nicaragua, Argentina and South Africa.

“He will be training at the Omega Boxing Gym and once the final venue is decided, we will plan the next move,” said Gello-ani.

Casimero captured the interim IBF crown in a battled-marred bout with hometown hero Luis Alberto Lazarte in February last year in Argentina. He knocked out the veteran former world champion in the 10th round and a group of disgruntled fans attacked him and his corner.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 10, 2013.

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