WBO champ Casimero wants Donaire, Inoue next
CARSON, California — John Riel Casimero poured everything he’s got against a Guillermo Rigondeux who did everything to avoid it.
On Saturday night (Sunday in Manila), Casimero settled for a split decision win after chasing the Cuban stylist all around the ring all evening to keep the WBO bantamweight title.
Daniel Sandoval (116-112) and Robert Hoyle (117-111) scored it for the Filipino slugger, while Tim Cheatham saw it 115-113 for the Cuban.
That’s the most they could do for the fight that only saw 91 total punches (47-44 in favor of Casimero) for both fighters for all 12 rounds before a disappointed crowd at Dignity Health Sports Park.
It was the lowest combined number of punches in Compubox’s 36-year history.
Not much to see here, as they combined to land just 91 punches, the lowest total for a 12-round fight in CompuBox's 36-year history. Casimero was awarded the decision due to his aggressiveness. pic.twitter.com/wPJpkvVeGm
— CompuBox (@CompuBox) August 15, 2021
“I want to score a knockout but he keeps on running and running,” said Casimero.
He tried to track down the slippery Cuban who was preoccupied with dazzling with his footwork than working his fists.
“Nobody wants to fight with me, but that is my game plan. I frustrate boxers,” said the 40-year-old Rigondeaux, a two-time Olympic gold medalist.
Fans, mostly unmasked, booed Rigondeux but it hardly affected him. “That’s why I’m unique, my style is the only one I know,” he said.
But Casimero sure could have done more to get through. But instead of shifting gears and using more movements, the 32-year-old Casimero suited himself into chasing him all the way.
That sure exposed the things lacking in the arsenal for the reigning champ who is looking for big-money fights against fellow Filipino Nonito Donaire and Naoya Inoue.
“This is my plan, three people. First, Rigondeaux is finished and second, Donaire, and next Naoya Inoue,” said Casimero while holding up his three fingers.
Casimero’s corner instructed him to go for the body but even trying to be in step with Rigondeaux was too difficult for him.
The Cuban also was able to sting him with pointed jabs, mostly thrown on the fly.
“That was the worst performance a guy ever did,” said MP Promotions president Sean Gibbons. “They should withhold his purse.”
The rant was borne out of frustration because not only the Cuban was skittish, but Casimero also didn’t do much. He only landed very few jabs — six of 130 attempts — that could have ignited engagement.
Casimero also failed to use his cunning to cut the ring with feints and head and shoulder movement.
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