John Riel Casimero has his stay-busy opponent while his fight with Naoya Inoue remains in limbo. According to ESPN’s Steve Kim and MP Promotions’ Sean Gibbons, the WBO bantamweight champion will face 11th-ranked contender and former Olympian Duke Micah on Showtime’s stacked September 26th split-site pay-per-view.
Inoue, meanwhile, is in talks to face Jason Moloney.
Gibbons also spoke to The Ring about the situation and Casimero’s (29-4, 20 KO) wishlist.
“So we decided it’s time to move on for now. It’s been so up and down, wanting to go home at one moment. The hardest thing for a fighter to train is not having a date, not really knowing what’s going on.”
“He’s shown interest in Guillermo Rigondeaux, he’d love an all-Filipino match with Nonito Donaire if he’s successful with [WBC bantamweight titleholder] Nordine Oubaali [on December 12], and of course there’s that guy that we were supposed to fight, Inoue. So Casimero has a lot of avenues he can go at 118 and 122 but we’re not looking past Duke Micah.
After falling to Michael Conlan in the 2012 Games, the 28-year-old Micah (24-0, 19 KO) spent much of his career competing in his native Accra, but he also spent a brief period in the UK. His last four fights took place stateside, including appearances on the Charlo-Hogan and Lara-Alvarez undercards. He’s almost entirely untested as a professional, though he did win and twice defend a WBC trinket.
Casimero, once again giving up height, makes the first defense of the title he destroyed Zolani Tete to claim in November. He was slated to face Inoue in a bid for unification earlier this year, but the coronavirus scrapped that.
The rest of the card features the Charlo brothers in potentially their toughest defenses to date against Sergiy Derevyanchenko and Jeison Rosario, Luis Nery in a vacant title fight against Aaron Alameda, and former unified super bantamweight champ Daniel Roman in an eliminator against Juan Carlos Payano.