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The trouble making the weight limit of 112 lbs and the desire to take on the marquee names have compelled Johnriel Casimero to relinquish the International Boxing Federation (IBF) flyweight crown.
Casimero, whose last fight was a knockout win over Charlie Edwards of England last September in London, has been having difficulties making 112.
“Making flyweight is already getting hard for him,” said Jhun Agrabio, Casimero’s chief trainer.
But one thing that prompted Casimero to campaign at superfly (115 lbs) was the presence of the more established stars like Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez of Nicaragua.
Casimero (23-3 record with 15 KOs) feels he is making the right move.
“To win my third title would be a great honor for me and put my name in with some of the best fighters my country has ever produced,” said Casimero, who had also won at light-fly (108 lbs).
If Casimero succeeds in winning the super-fly championship, he will become only the third Filipino to capture three or more titles in different divisions.
Manny Pacquiao is credited for winning eight while Nonito Donaire has won four.
Two-division champions include Donnie Nietes, Dodie Boy and Gerry Penalosa and Luisito Espinosa.
Sampson Lewkowicz, who serves as Casimero’s promoter, believes the decision to leave flyweight will immediately pay off.
“He’s so strong and he keep growing. It is time for Johnriel to move up and secure his place in Philippine boxing history.”
Lewkowicz insists that if a Gonzalez fight can’t be arranged, an all-Filipino meeting with reigning IBF ruler Jerwin Ancajas could be another possibility.