By Ronnie Nathanielsz
International Boxing Federation Championship Committee chairman Lindsey Tucker has confirmed that the mandatory title defense of light flyweight champion Johnreil Casimero against Luis Alberto Rios of Panama will go to a purse bid.
Tucker informed BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard that the the purse bid is scheduled for January 2 after "the two sides could not reach an agreement within the 30 day negotiations period."
Tucker said "the winner of the Purse Bid will have 90 days to promote the fight. The Purse Bid split will be 75% to the Champion (Casimero) and 25% to the mandatory challenger (Rios).
Casimero's promoter Sammy Gello-ani is hoping to somehow stage the fight in Manila provided any of the major TV networks and/or sponsors will provide financial support to enable the Filipino world champion to defend his title before a hometown crowd.
Casimero won the title with a 10th round TKO over Luis Lazarte of Argentina in a fight that was marred by a post-fight riot by Lazarte's supporters who attacked Casimero as well as Gello-ani and prevented Casimero from receiving the IBF belt in the ring.
The hard-hitting Filipino successfuly defended his title with a twelve round split decision over Pedro Guevara in Sinaloa, Mexico on August 4 this year.
Ruben Garcia who was roundly criiticized for his 115-113 scorecard when Nonito "The Filipino Flash" Donaire won the WBO super bantamweight title against Wilfredo Vazquez Jr of Puerto Rico was again the dissenting judge with a 114-113 scorecard in favor of Guevara who was dropped by Casimero in the opening round.
The 22 year old Casimero has a record of 17-2 with 10 knockouts while Rios who is also 22, sports a record of 18-1-1 with 13 knockouts. He earned the title shot with an 11th round TKO over Felipe Salguero last October 25 in a title eliminator.
Salguero had earlier dropped a twelve round unanimous decision to WBO champion Donnie Nietes on June 20 this year in Manila