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Donnie Nietes vacates title ahead of Aston Palicte purse bid

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The bid was scheduled for today (February 28th)

Donnie Nietes v Kazuto Ioka - WBO Super Flyweight Title Bout Photo by Kevin Lee/Getty Images

With a purse bid against mandatory challenger Aston Palicte looming, four-division champion Donnie Nietes has vacated the super flyweight title he defeated Kazuto Ioka to win last NYE. In a letter to the WBO, the 37-year-old Nietes made clear his desire for a “career-defining fight” as his nearly 16-year stint as a pro winds down.

There don’t appear to be any hard feelings.

Nietes (42-1-5, 23 KO) won his first WBO world title in 2007, defeating Pornsawan Porpramook for the minimumweight belt in the former’s native Philippines. After several successful defenses, he moved up to capture the light flyweight title with a decision over Ramon Garcia Hirales in 2011. He skipped the sanctioning body’s 112-pound belt, instead claiming IBF gold, then defeated Ioka for the WBO super flyweight belt.

There were talks of pitting him against Kal Yafai on DAZN, but Yafai is currently occupied with Norberto Jimenez. Nietes has long desired a fight with Roman Gonzalez, however, and “Chocolatito” looks to be available at the moment.

As far as the vacant title, the aforementioned Carlos Toro points out that #1 Palicte’s likeliest opponent is #4 Ioka, as the higher-ranked Juan Francisco Estrada and Ryuichi Funai are already booked for title fights against Srisaket Sor Rungvisai and Jerwin Ancajas, respectively.