John Riel Casimero stuns Zolani Tete
Through two rounds last Saturday night at Arena Birmingham in Birmingham, England, John Riel Casimero looked to be in trouble.
WBO bantamweight champion Zolani Tete was taller (by a whopping five inches), quicker, and longer. His southpaw jab was catching Casimero consistently.
Casimero wasn’t doing much.
An occasional onrush would be met with a shot to the mouth. He was in the fight, but he sure wasn’t winning. At this point it looked like Tete would cruise to a decision victory.
Looks can be deceiving though as things changed suddenly in round three.
Casimero (29-4, 20 KOs) landed a double jab that seemed to surprise Tete. Seconds later he jumped inside with a sharp right hand that crashed off the temple of Tete.
The defending champion, stunned, bent at the waist. Casimero followed up with right that hit the same spot. Tete went down all fours. When he got up, his legs in essence stayed on the floor. He staggered and went down again as Casimero fired more punches.
He beat the count but staggered, prompting the referee to wave off the contest.
Just like that, John Riel Casimero had joined the ranks of fighters who have won world titles in three different weight divisions.
He wasted no time calling out, “The Monster” Naoya Inoue—who’s open to the matchup.
“Come on, Inoue,” said Casimero. “Zolani Tete is a good fighter, but next fight, Inoue. Come on, Monster!”
Casimero has won his last five fights by knockout. His confidence is sky high. Facing the multi-talented Inoue would be a tall order, but sooner rather than later is likely wise.
No matter when it happens though, Casimero,30, proved that in boxing, the old adage of, “It only takes one” will live forever.