Home Boxing News John Riel Casimero wants Naoya Inoue after victory over Guillermo Rigondeaux

John Riel Casimero wants Naoya Inoue after victory over Guillermo Rigondeaux

John Riel Casimero. Photo credit: Sean Michael Ham/PBC

WBO bantamweight champion John Riel Casimero 31-4 (21) retained his title with a 12-round split decision victory over Guillermo Rigondeaux 20-2 (13) at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California on Saturday night.

To say the fight was a snoozefest is an understatement. Over 12 rounds, Rigondeaux landed 44 total punches. John Riel Casimero landed 47 total punches. The combined total of 91 landed punches is the lowest for a 12-round fight in CompuBox history.

Neither boxer achieved double digits in landed punches in any of the rounds. The high for landed punches in a round for both fighters was just seven punches.

“I’m excited to get the win,” said Casimero. “Rigondeaux is a good boxer and two-time Olympic gold medallist. I was worried, because he said he wouldn’t run, but he ran the whole time.”

Filipino Casimero, 32, was the aggressor while Rigondeaux stayed up on his toes and circled the ring. The 40-year-old Cuban southpaw was evasive and Casimero struggled to catch up with him.

In the end, judge Robert Hoyle scored the fight 117-111 for Casimero. Judge Daniel Sandoval had it 116-112 for Casimero. Judge Tim Cheatham saw it the other way, giving the fight to Rigondeaux with a score of 115-113.

Perhaps the only thing that kept the judges awake was the boos from the crowd.

“My expectations were for a knockout,” said Casimero. “Me and all my fans wanted that. I did my best to knock him out, but he was just running and not fighting.”

Sean Gibbons, president of MP Promotions who represent Casimero, was equally unimpressed.

“He’s very frustrated, it’s embarrassing,” Gibbons said. “Casimero came in the best shape to come and put on a real fight. They should hold up that man’s purse.”

Rigondeaux insisted he won the fight and said he executed his gameplan perfectly.

“That’s my gameplan, to frustrate boxers,” Rigondeaux said. “That’s how I fight. God gave me those skills, and that’s how I display them. That’s my style.”

Casimero was expected to face WBC bantamweight champion Nonito ‘The Filipino Flash’ Donaire 41-6 (27) on Saturday night before the 38-year-old Filipino withdrew citing an issue with drug testing protocols and what he said was disrespect shown towards his wife, trainer and manager Rachel Donaire.

Casimero still wants to fight Donaire but the other major name on his lips is WBA and IBF 118-pound champion Naoya ‘The Monster’ Inoue 21-0 (18).

“I always call Naoya Inoue but Naoya Inoue is scared of me like Donaire,” Casimero said in the post-fight press conference.

“If he signs a contract, let’s do it, I’ll fight. Naoya Inoue and Donaire, all scared. I don’t know what happened.

“Naoya Inoue, I know he has power, but me too. I’m very powerful. Naoya and me in a fight, that is a very perfect style.”

“Even in the house of Inoue, I’ll fight him. No problem.”