Fri. Oct 22nd, 2021


John Riel Casimero Guillermo Rigondeaxu

John Riel Casimero—AFP

MANILA, Philippines—John Riel Casimero and Nonito Donaire were finally able to bury the hatchet but a unification bout for their WBO and WBC bantamweight titles won’t happen just yet.

The WBO ordered Casimero to defend his bantamweight strap against the United Kingdom’s Paul Butler in a mandatory title fight.

As per BoxingScene.com, the sanctioning body contacted both camps on Thursday (Manila time) with talks to begin immediately to avoid any purse bid hearings.

“The WBO World Championship Committee hereby orders the parties herein commencement of negotiations for the above-mentioned WBO Bantamweight Mandatory Championship Contest,” Luis Batista-Salas, chairman of the WBO Championship Committee informed the promoters for both parties via official letter.

According to the report, the parties have 20 days upon receipt of the letter to reach an agreement.

“If an accord is not reached within the time frame set forth herein, a Purse Bid will be ordered pursuant to WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests.”

Casimero and Donaire were supposed to unify the WBO and WBC titles this August but negotiations broke down after the former’s disparaging remarks toward the latter’s family.

Donaire, who was likewise ordered by WBC to defend his title against Reymart Gaballo, also alleged that Casimero is not enrolled in the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association.

Casimero (31-4) is carrying a seven-fight winning streak with his latest win against Guillermo Rigondeaux the only bout to reach 12 rounds.

Butler (33-2) holds the WBO International bantamweight championship, a title he earned in June this year after a split decision win over Willibaldo Garcia, and had a run with the IBF title when he beat Stuart Hall in June 2014.

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