Earlier today the IBF announced that they would be holding a special card to celebrate their 36th anniversary, with a small but notable show in Macau.
The big fight for local fans comes at Light Heavyweight, where the unbeaten Chinese hopeful Meng Fanlong (14-0, 9) [孟繁龙] will face unbeaten German Adam Deines (17-0-1, 8), in a bout for an IBF minor title, rumoured to be the IBF Inter-continental title.
Another unbeaten fighter on this card will be Australian Steve Gago (10-0, 4), who takes on Filipino fighter Adam Diu Abdulhamid (14-7, 6). This will be for a regional IBF title, and although it looks like a mismatch we're actually really interested in this one, with Abdulhamid being much better than his record suggests.
A third bout of note will see former world title challenger Richie Mepranum (33-7-1, 9) take on Chinese fighter Sen Chen (11-1, 2). This will also be for a regional IBF title, and looks like a tough bout for the Chinese youngster, though Mepranum is certainly not the fighter he once was.
At the moment full details of the card haven't been revealed, though we are hoping that the show will be given a free legal stream though some of the Chinese sites.
Former IBF Light Flyweight and Flyweight champion Johnriel Casimero (23-3, 15) has sadly been inactive since travelling to England last September and stopping Charlie Edwards in 10 rounds, to record his first and only defense of the Flyweight crown. Despite that inactivity Casimero has got big plans and is looking to become a 3-weight world champion in the near future, moving up to Super Flyweight to achieve the feat.
Today it was revealed, by Ryan Songalia of Rappler, that Casimero will return to the ring on June 25th, ending his 9 month break from the ring to take on former 3-time world title challenger Richie Mepranum (31-6-1, 8) with the bout to take place in Iligan City, Philippines.
For Casimero the bout will be his first as a fully fledged Super Flyweight and his and sees him fighting in the Philippines for the first time in over 3 years, following bouts in Thailand, China and the UK. Although talented he's joining a division full of wolves with the likes of Naoya Inoue, Roman Gonalez, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, Jerwin Ancajas, Juan Francisco Estrada, David Carmona, Kal Yafai, Sho Ishida and Carlos Cuadras all stacking up the talent rich division. Whilst it's clear his intention is to become a 3-weight champion there is no easy title to snatch and he's going to have to go through a top fighter to even got a shot at a belt.
For Mepranum the bout comes on the back of stoppage loisses to Carlos Cuadras and Luis Nery and although he has fought in a number of world title bouts you actually need to go back to 2010 to find a win of real note on his record,a decision win over the then 27-0 Hernan Marquez. Since that win Mepranum has gone 9-5 (3) with 4 stoppage defeats. Although far from a gate keeper Mepranum should serve as a good first test at 115lbs for Casimero.
If Casimero beats his countryman talk will begin among fans for a bout between Casimero and countryman Ancajas, the current IBF champion, that bout does however seem unlikely with Casimero's promoter suggesting their would be a lack of money in the bout, something that is currently plaguing the Filipino fight scene, with only ALA reall having any financial fire power right now, thanks to their high profile TV deal with ABS-CBN
For the second time this year fans in Mexico saw a local star score a stoppage win over Filipino visitor Richie Mepranum (31-6-1, 8).
Back in April the Filipino was stopped in 8 rounds in a WBC Super Flyweight title fight by the then champion Carlos Cuadras, last night he was stopped in just 2 rounds by Bantamweight contender Luis Nery (21-0, 15), who is said to be chasing WBC Bantamweight champion Shinsuke Yamanaka.
From the opening seconds it was clear that Mepranum was a naturally smaller man and there was little he could do to stop Nery from walking him down and bullying him. That bullying was notable through out and in the round Nery chased the stoppage, dropping Mepranum early in the round, Mepranum narrowly beat the count but was downed again soon afterwards, with the second knockdown forcing the referee to just wave the bout off.
This was Nery's third stoppage win over a Filipino in his last 6 bouts, sadly though they have all come against naturally smaller fighters, including Flyweight Jether Oliva, and one wonders how he will cope when he's matched against a decent fighter his own size.
(Image courtesy of Zanfer Promociones)
In Mexico tonight fight fans will see Filipino Richie Mepranum (31-4-1, 8) challenger unbeaten WBC Super Flyweight champion Carlos Cuadras (34-0-1, 26). The bout will be Mepranum's third world title bout, and could well be his final one.
Coming in to the bout the Filipino is the clear under-dog, with odds makers pricing him at around 7/1 to win the bout. The under-dog tag might not worry for the Filipino but the bookies do rarely get it that wrong and it's clear that he will be up against it.
At 1/12 Cuadras is almost unbackable as the favourite, and a loss for him would be one of the biggest shocks of the year so far.
As for the draw that is around 25/1, with one bookie offering as high as 30/1. Those odds aren't terrible given that the technical draw will be covered and the bout is an orthodox Vs southpaw bout, but we still suspect that Cuadras will be able to over come the Filipino.
Mepranum hopes it's third time lucky as he faces Cuadras!
Tonight fans in Mexico will get the chance to see Filipino fighter Richie Mepranum (31-4-1, 8) face off against unbeaten WBC Super Flyweight champion Carlos Cuadras (34-0-1, 26).
Yesterday the two fighters weighed in for the bout and both made the 115lbs, with a lot of room to spare.
On the scales the Filipino challenger was 112¾lbs, the lowest since he fought Juan Francisco Estrada for a Flyweight , more than 2 years ago. Cuadras for Cuadras he was 113lbs, a full 2lbs under the limit and the lowest weight of his career.
The winner of this one is expected to face destructive Thai Srisaket Sor Rungvisai [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น] in the summer.
Mepranum hopes it's third time lucky as he faces Cuadras!
(Image courtesy of boxingscene)
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