Paul Butler (33-2) was scheduled to face WBO bantamweight champion John Riel Casimero Friday night at the Echo Arena in Liverpool in the main event of a Probellum card. Unfortunately for him, those plans were cancelled for the second time when Casimero was pulled again for weight related issues.
However, this time around Butler will still be able to fight. Casimero’s countryman Jonas Sultan (18-5) was designated as a standby opponent for the show in case something like this happened again.
The 31-year-old Sultan put himself in this position with his October upset win over the then unbeaten Carlos Caraballo. He is promoted by Manny Pacquiao Promotions and Viva Promotions.
Manny Pacquiao Promotions’ President Sean Gibbons is very confident that Sultan will pull off another upset on Friday night.
"These are the opportunities you wait for your whole life when you turn professional - to fight for a world title, to fight for a WBO world in Liverpool, England in front of Paul Butler's home crowd to win a WBO title. I think Jonas is well prepared for this. He knew there were issues with John Riel Casimero and the weight so he has been preparing the past two and a half months, especially the past few weeks,” Gibbons told BoxingScene.com.
Besides having a shot at a world title, Sultan is also motivated to fight for the memory of his friend Ali Tazeem. The amateur boxing star’s life was tragically cut short over the weekend in a car accident.
“Mentally and physically he is in the best shape that has he has ever been in in his life. He is dedicating this fight to Ali Tazeem who was killed on Saturday night. He was his good friend and he was staying with and living with his father Dr. Tee in Birmingham,” said Gibbons.
“He is dedicating the fight to him and of course to the people of the Philippines. I just think that Jonas has the style to give Paul Butler problems. He is a very aggressive, strong powerful guy. That is why they call him One Punch. Come Friday night, I think you are going to hear, 'and the new WBO champion of the world, from the Philippines, Jonas Sultan.’"
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