WBC orders Donaire to defend title against Gaballo
CEBU CITY, Philippines—- The World Boxing Council (WBC) ordered four-division world champion and reigning WBC world bantamweight champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire Jr. to defend his title against unbeaten interim world champion and fellow Filipino Reymart “Assassin” Gaballo.
In a tweet on Tuesday, September 21, the WBC announced four mandatory bouts for the rest of the year, which also includes Boholano Mark “Magnifico” Magsayo going up against WBC world featherweight champion Garry Russell Jr. (see separate story), Joseph Diaz vs Ryan Garcia (WBC lightweight interim championship) and Eduardo Ramirez vs Lerato Dlamini (WBC featherweight final elimination).
But WBC is yet to decide on the final date of the Donaire-Gaballo fight.
The WBC went in a different direction, spoiling many Filipino boxing fans who expected to see an all Filipino world title unification bout between Donaire Jr. and WBO world bantamweight champion John Riel “Quadro Alas” Casimero despite their intense rivalry on social media.
WBC’s tweet came out hours after Donaire Jr. posted on his Facebook page that American boxing promoter and manager Al Haymon has informed his manager Richard Schaefer that Casimero has “rejected” the contract offer for the world title unification showdown.
However, Casimero’s manager, Sean Gibbons, denied all these accusations.
In contrast, an all-Filipino bout in the ring will still happen, but Donaire will face a younger and an equally dangerous opponent in Gaballo, one of the banner fighters of General Santos City-based Sanman Promotions.
Donaire Jr. will trade leathers with an opponent 13 years younger than him with an unbeaten record of 24 wins with 20 knockouts.
The 38-year old Donaire Jr. has a record of 41-6 (win-loss) with 27 knockouts.
Gaballo, now based in Miami and trained by Cuban Osmiri Fernandez, is the reigning WBC interim world bantamweight champion. He wrested the title by beating erstwhile unbeaten contender Emmanuel Rodriguez of Puerto Rico via split decision in Uncasville, Connecticut, in December 2020.
Gaballo, the pride of Polomolok, Cotabato del Sur, is also the former WBA interim world bantamweight champion. Before escaping Rodriguez (19-2,12KOs) with a split decision victory, Gaballo won his four previous bouts via technical knockout.
Meanwhile, Donaire Jr. snatched the WBC world bantamweight title by easily knocking out French/Morrocan erstwhile champion Nordine Oubaali last May in Carson City, California.
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