Casimero-Inoue fight possible in 2024, says international judge
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The upcoming fight of former three-division world champion John Riel “Quadro Alas” Casimero in Japan is most likely a tune-up bout for a much-awaited clash with Japanese boxing superstar Naoya “Monster” Inoue next year.
This was revealed by World Boxing Organization (WBO) international judge Edward Ligas in a Facebook post on Saturday, September 2, 2023.
Ligas was in Tokyo, Japan recently to join WBO Asia Pacific president Leon Panoncillo Jr. who awarded Inoue a special belt that the WBO made for unifying the four major world titles in the bantamweight division and for winning the WBC and WBO super bantamweight straps recently.
In his Facebook post, Ligas said that a top-ranking official of the Japan Boxing Commission (JBC), whom he didn’t name, had told him that Casimero and Inoue’s paths will eventually cross next year.
Ligas said that after Inoue fights WBA and IBF world super bantamweight champion Marlon Tapales in December, he will target Casimero next.
Inoue (25-0, 22KOs) and Tapales (37-3, 19KOs) are likely to fight in December to unify the four world super bantamweight titles, but negotiations are currently ongoing between the two boxers’ camps.
Meanwhile, Casimero (33-4, 22KOs) must take care of Yukinori Oguni first as they are set to fight on October 12, 2023 at the Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan.
Casimero, the reigning WBO Global super bantamweight champion, will fight Oguni for a 10-rounder non-title bout promoted by Treasure Boxing Promotions.
The 34-year-old Casimero of Merida, Leyte has been linked to Inoue’s name since 2021. Both boxers almost sealed a mega fight in the same year, but the plan was eventually shelved.
Casimero and Inoue went their separate ways despite their intense trash talking on social media.
Inoue continued his ascension in boxing, while Casimero severed his ties with MP Promotions.
Casimero lost his WBO world bantamweight title in 2022 for allegedly violating the British Boxing Board of Control rules for using a sauna to shed off weight a week before his title defense against British Paul Butler.
Still, Casimero bounced back from that ordeal and bagged the WBO Global title last May by beating Fillipus Nghitumbwa of Namibia in Manila.
After winning the WBO Global title, Casimero vowed to chase Inoue and snatch the latter’s titles. / dcb
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