Liverpool fan-favourite Paul Butler will aim to unseat world champion John Riel Casimero as global boxing and media company Probellum brings its first show to Liverpool on Friday, April 22.

Butler will lead a stellar list of big-name fighters such as former WBA super middleweight champion Rocky Fielding, next generation stars including Liverpool-born brothers Peter and Joe McGrail, and the highly rated duo of Will Cawley and Luke McCormack.

In the night’s main event at the M&S Bank Arena, Filipino Casimero (31-4, 21 knockouts) puts his WBO bantamweight title on the line against the UK’s Butler (33-2, 15 knockouts) in a bout which was originally due to be held at Probellum’s inaugural December 2021 show in Dubai before Casimero was unable to make weight.

“Liverpool is one of the most passionate boxing cities in the world and we are delighted to be holding our first show at the M&S Bank Arena in April,” said Richard Schaefer, President of Probellum.

“This is an absolutely fantastic card featuring a combination of world-class fighters, extremely talented aspiring stars and packed with local talent whose fans will no doubt create a truly unique atmosphere.

“With the likes of John Riel Casimero, Paul Butler, Rocky Fielding and the McGrail brothers all set to put on a great show, we fully expect some thrilling fights and a fantastic occasion.”

Local fans will be in full voice supporting recent Probellum signings the McGrail brothers, Peter (2-0, 1 knockout) and Joe (1-0, 1 knockout), who both secured second-round stoppage victories when they fought at the M&S Bank Arena on the Connor Benn versus Chris Algieri undercard in December.

Also on the card are the Probellum duo of rising-star Cawley (1-0) who will be aiming to build on his impressive debut victory in November 2021 and former Olympian McCormack who is set to make his professional bow following a superb career at amateur level, during which time he represented Team GB.


CARSON, CALIF. (August 9, 2021) – WBO Bantamweight World Champion John Riel Casimero will look to score a career-best victory and successfully defend his 118-pound title for the second time when he faces two-division champion Guillermo Rigondeaux this Saturday, August 14 live on SHOWTIME from Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.

The event is promoted by TGB Promotions. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at
The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast will begin at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT as Casimero fights in the U.S. for the third time, this time headlining a Premier Boxing Champions event. Here is what the three-division world champion Casimero had to say about this Saturday’s showdown and more:

On his current training camp:
“This has been a fantastic training camp. I’ve really been focusing on my conditioning so that I can keep my strength for all 12 rounds. This has been the best training I’ve had in a while, because for this fight I had a set date and plenty of time. For my last fight, the date was changed because of the pandemic and that was difficult to work through. But this camp has been very smooth.”

On training alongside his mentor and promoter Manny Pacquiao:
“Manny is my idol in this sport. It’s great for me to be able to watch how he trains every day. He helps me with some aspects of boxing, but most important is the motivation I get from watching him work.

On fighting in front of Southern California’s Filipino population and returning to fight at Dignity Health Sports Park:

“I always want to go out and do my best for the fans. There are going to be a lot of Filipinos there and I want more than anything to give them a great fight to watch. This is the same place where I won the interim title in 2019, so it will be very special to me to go defend my world title and put on a great performance in that ring once again.”

On what style he expects Rigondeaux to bring into the ring:
“I know that I can make this an easy fight for myself. I want him to have some guts and be the exciting fighter he’s shown recently. It will be better for the fans and it will really prove who is the best.”

On what message he wants to send to the rest of the division with win:
“I want to show that I’m strong and can beat any tough opponent. A win over Rigondeaux will solidify me as one of, if not the best, fighter in the bantamweight division. My goal is to take care of business on Saturday night, then go after the scared Nonito Donaire.”

Rigondeaux vs. Casimero will see two-division world champion Guillermo Rigondeaux face bantamweight world champion John Riel Casimero for his WBO belt on Saturday, August 14 live on SHOWTIME headlining a Premier Boxing Champions event from Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.

Photos from Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions

WBO Bantamweight World Champion John Riel Casimero and challenger Duke Micah previewed the CHARLO DOUBLEHEADER at final press conference for their fight on Saturday, September 26 live on SHOWTIME PPV (7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT), in an event presented by Premier Boxing Champions.

“This is my first time on SHOWTIME so I want to give everyone watching an impressive performance. I’ll go for the knockout.

“This is a big opportunity show the world who I am. I promise I will do my best this fight. I am extremely ready to give it my all.

“My opponent is a mature boxer with good experience. But I’m going to be too strong for him. I believe I’m the best at 118-pounds.”

“This fight will be like Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali.”

“I have to stick to my game plan. I expect my opponent to box and move. I’ve prepared for a couple attacks that I think he will use. I’ve never been more ready for a fight than I am for this one.

“Casimero is a good boxer, but I’m a different fighter than I’ve been in the past. I’ve improved my game so much working with Andre Rozier. The fans will see it on Saturday night, and they will become instant fans of my electrifying style.”

The event is presented by Premier Boxing Champions and promoted by Lions Only Promotions and TGB Promotions.

Photos by Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

A five-foot-five-inch, 118-pound Japanese monster is ready to take over the Las Vegas Strip. WBA/IBF bantamweight world champion Naoya “Monster” Inoue, the three-weight world champion climbing the mythical pound-for-pound rankings, will make his Las Vegas debut Saturday, April 25 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in a unification bout against WBO bantamweight world champion and fellow three-weight kingpin Johnriel Casimero.

Inoue is coming off a memorable decision in the 2019 Ring Magazine and Fight of the Year against future Hall of Famer Nonito Donaire. This will be Inoue’s first bout under his long-term promotional agreement with Top Rank.

Inoue-Casimero and the 10-round bantamweight tilt featuring WBO No. 1 contender Joshua “Don’t Blink” Greer Jr. and WBO No. 2 contender Jason Moloney will stream LIVE on ESPN+ beginning at 9 p.m. ET. In the final undercard bout on the ESPN+ stream, former super featherweight world champion Andrew Cancio will take on Tyler McCreary in a 10-rounder.

The preliminary bouts will air live on ESPN2 (7 p.m. ET) and will include the return of former world title challenger Alex “El Cholo” Saucedo in a 10-round super lightweight bout.

Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Ohashi Promotions, MP Promotions, TGB Promotions and SGG Sports Promotions, tickets priced at $300, $200, $100, $50 and $25 (not including applicable fees) go on sale Friday, Feb. 14 at 10 a.m. PT and can be purchased online at or by phone at 888-929-7849.

“The ‘Monster’ is coming to Las Vegas, and we couldn’t be more excited,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “He is a generational talent, a fierce competitor who is ready to take the United States by storm. Casimero is a seasoned champion, and Inoue knows he’s in for a firefight at Mandalay Bay.”

Inoue (19-0, 16 KOs), 26, won his first title in only his sixth pro fight, knocking out Adrian Hernandez to win the WBC light flyweight crown. He is 14-0 with 12 knockouts in world title bouts, as he defended his light flyweight title once before moving up two weight classes to knock out long-time WBO junior bantamweight world champion Omar Narvaez in two rounds in December 2014. He defended that belt seven times before setting his sights on the bantamweight division. His first three bantamweight title bouts lasted a total of four rounds, as he catapulted up pound-for-pound lists with stoppages over Emmanuel Rodriguez and Juan Carlos Payano. The Donaire bout — the final of the World Boxing Super Series tournament — was the ultimate gut check, as he suffered a broken orbital bone before prevailing in an instant classic.

“It is a tremendous honor and a dream come true to headline a card in Las Vegas against a great fighter like Casimero,” Inoue said. “It is my goal to be the undisputed bantamweight king, and I am coming to America to put on a great fight for the fans. I would like to thank Mr. Bob Arum and MGM Resorts for making my Las Vegas dream a reality. Now, the work begins, and I will kick off my 2020 schedule at Mandalay Bay in devastating fashion.”

Casimero (29-4, 20 KOs), from Ormoc City, Philippines, is a newly minted bantamweight world champion who upset South African southpaw Zolani Tete via third-round TKO last November in Birmingham England. A world traveler, Casimero has won world title bouts in Mexico, England, China, Panama and the Philippines, in addition to interim world title bouts in Argentina, Nicaragua and the United States. He is on a five-bout winning streak and is in his physical prime at 29 years old. The Inoue-Casimero winner will be one belt shy of completely unifying the division, as WBC world champion Nordine Oubaali holds the final piece of the championship puzzle.

“This is my dream fight. I have traveled the world and fought in 10 countries. I’ve won world titles at 108, 112 and 118 pounds,” Casimero said. “But ever since I saw my hero and fellow countryman, Senator Manny Pacquiao, fight in Las Vegas, that has been my dream. To everyone who thinks I am the underdog on April 25, I will shock the world and show the fans who the real ‘Monster’ is in the ring.”


Luis Batista Salas, Esq.
WBO Championship Committee


As per Section 11 through 14 of the WBO Regulations for World Championship Contests ( and as per promoter’s request, please be advised a Purse Bid will be held at 9:00 a.m. (PST) on Saturday, September 14th 2019, at the following venue:

MGM Grand Las Vegas Hotel
3799 Las Vegas, Blvd, Las Vegas, NV
89109, United States of America
Telephone: +1 (877) 880-0880

The minimum acceptable bid for the World Bantamweight Division is $100,000.00 US Dollars.
In accordance with the WBO Championship Rules & Regulations, the President, Francisco Valcárcel, Esq. will preside over the Purse Bid.

Any additional information, please visit our website at or contact the WBO main office.


Luis Batista Salas, Esq.
WBO Championship Committee

September 5th 2019

VIA EMAIL: Mr. Frank Warren Queensberry Promotions – Mr. Sean Gibbons MP Promotions

Re: WBO Bantamweight Championship Contest – Purse Bid Zolani Tete vs. John Riel Casimero


As per Section 11 through 14 of the enclosed copy of the WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests (, please be advised that a Purse Bid will be held at 9:00 a.m. (PST) on Saturday, September 14th, 2019, at the following venue:

MGM Grand Hotel & Casino
Lobby Area
3799 S Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Telephone: +1 (877) 880-0880

Pursuant with our WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests on Purse Bid procedures, be advised on the following:

The minimum acceptable bid for the WBO Bantamweight Division is $100,000.00 (One Hundred Thousand Dollars).

WBO President Francisco Valcárcel, Esq., will preside purse bid proceedings.
Kindly note the following provisions:

1. If the Champion is injured and depending on the type of injury and the needed recovery time, or is unavailable or refuses to fight, the WBO Championship Committee in accordance with the WBO Regulations, will declare the title is “Vacant” and could recommend to the WBO Ratings Committee that the former Champion be rated at the number one (1) position in the WBO Bantamweight Division in accordance with the ABC and WBO Ratings Criteria. Consequently, the
Interim WBO Champion will be elevated to WBO Bantamweight Champion status.

2. If the WBO Interim Champion is injured, unavailable or refuses to fight, his title will be declared “Vacant” and the WBO Championship Committee could recommend to the WBO Ratings Committee that the former Interim Champion be rated at the number one (1) position in the Bantamweight Division in accordance with the ABC and WBO Ratings Critera. The WBO Bantamweight Champion may be allowed a “Voluntary” fight or the Committee may issue any other ruling pursuant with the WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests.

3. Signed contracts shall be filed to the WBO Offices within five (5) days from the adjudication of the Purse Bid.

4. 50% of the total proposed purse in the form of a certified check, cashier’s check or money order payable to the WBO, or money in cash, in the legal tender of the United States of America (dollars), shall be filed in an Escrow Account within ten (10) days from the adjudication of the Purse Bid.

5. Bout must be held no later than 90 days from the adjudication of the Purse Bid.

Conversely, be advised that as result of then former WBO Bantamweight Champion Marlon Tapales’ inactivity, this Committee ordered an elimination bout to determine the Mandatory Challenger of the referenced division between Zolani Tete vs. Arthur Villanueva. On April 22nd 2017, Tapales lost his title at the scale due to exceeding the prescribed Bantamweight Division weight limit. Subsequently, this Committee sanctioned an Interim Championship Contest between the aforementioned contestants which also, was held on the same date at the Leicester Arena, Leicester, Leicestershire, United Kingdom. Tete defeated Villanueva via Unanimous Decision (UD) to win the Interim WBO Bantamweight Championship Title. Immediately thereafter, Tete was elevated to WBO Bantamweight Champion status and successfully defeated Siboniso Gonya via Knockout (KO); bout held at the SSE Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom.

Shortly thereafter, Tete successfully defended the aforementioned title against former WBO Flyweight and Jr. Bantamweight Champion Omar Narvaez via Unanimous Decision (UD); bout held at the SSE Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom.

Afterward, Tete entered the Bantamweight Division Tournament held by World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) and faced Mikhail Aloyan winning via unanimous decision (UD); bout held in Ekaterinburg Expo, Ekaterinburg, Russia, on October 13th 2018. Then, Tete was scheduled to face former WBO Bantamweight and Jr. Featherweight Champion Nonito Donaire in a Unification Bantamweight Championship bout scheduled for April 27th 2019, at Lafayette, Louisiana, USA. In light of the tournament’s duration, lack of activity within the division, and considering the rights of all the contenders in the referenced division, the WBO World Championship Committee ordered an Interim Championship contest on April 16th 2019, between then ranked contenders Ricardo Espinoza and former WBO Jr. Flyweight Champion John Riel Casimero. The bout was held at the Dignity Health Stadium in Los Angeles, California, whereby Casimero won via Knockout (KO). Days before the bout, on April 24th 2019, Tete’s representatives informed the WBO that their fighter had suffered an injury in his shoulder and therefore, decided withdrawing from the referenced bout and WBSS tournament. Furthermore, on May 5th 2019, Queensberry Promotions on behalf of Tete filed via email an official medical certification confirming said injury, and advising that Tete would return to active training within 4-6 weeks. On July 11th 2019, Tete’s promotional representatives filed another medical certification indicating the status of said fighter’s recovery period and advising that the rehab period would extend until the month of September of the aforementioned year.

Considering Tete’s recovery extension period, the WBO sanctioned a “Voluntary” bout between WBO Interim Bantamweight Champion Casimero and contender Cesar Ramirez; bout held on Saturday, August 24th 2019, at San Andres Civic & Sports Center, District of Malate, Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines. Casimero successfully defended his title winning via Knockout (KO) in round ten (10). Moreover, on August 26th 2019, this Committee ordered commencement of negotiations between the Team Tete and Team Casimero whereby the parties where granted ten (10) days to reach an agreement. Unfortunately, the parties could not reach an agreement and on Tuesday, September 3rd 2019, Mr. Sean Gibbons on behalf of MP Promotions, requested Purse Bid Procedures accordingly. Said request was also ratified by Mr. Andy Ayling of Queensberry Promotions on the same date.

In summary, Tete only fought on two (2) occasions during 2018, being his last fight on October 13th 2018. Thus far, Tete has not participate in active competition in over eleven (11) months whereas, Casimero won the Interim Bantamweight Championship and successfully defended said title. Therefore, having Tete fully healed and fit to box, and Casimero being designated Mandatory Challenger in the Bantamweight Division, this Committee has ordered that both contestants fight in order to determine only one WBO Bantamweight Champion. In light of the foregoing circumstances, and pursuant to Section 1(b)(1) (20)(c) of the WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests, and this Committee having the authority and discretion empowered by our rules, the WBO World Championship Committee determines as follows:

(b) The World Championship Committee shall have the following powers and discretion:

(1)To determine the format and venue for making any determination that is subject of the WBO World Championship Rules; and,

(20) To make or recommend exceptions or variations from the Rules as the W orld Championship Committee determines are necessary, and

(c) The above powers shall be interpreted to include any and all powers necessary, helpful or convenient to accomplish the purposes, policies, and intent of these rules.

(a)The purse for Championship Contests held and completed pursuant to Purse Bids (except those Championship Contests involving situations described in Section (14)(e) hereof, the Purse Bid division for which shall be distributed as per Section (14)(e)(2) shall be distributed as follows:


(A)In fights for the Title between the Champion and the Mandatory Challenger held in the country of origin, residence or nationality of the  Champion, the Champion shall receive 75% of the purse and the Challenger shall receive the remaining 25%.
(B)In fights for the title held in any other country, the Champion shall receive 80% of the purse and the Challenger shall receive the remaining 20%.

Wherefore, the WBO Bantamweight Champion Zolani Tete shall receive 75% of the purse and the WBO Interim Bantamweight Champion John Riel Casimero (Mandatory Challenger) shall receive the remaining 25% of the purse.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our main offices.

Yours truly,

Luis Batista Salas, Esq.
Cc: Francisco Valcárcel, Esq./President

Filipino boxing star and three-division world champion John Riel “Quadro Alas” Casimero dominated Mexico’s Cesar “Perico” Ramirez en route to a tenth-round knockout win to retain the WBO Interim Bantamweight World Championship, Saturday evening.

The Casimero-Ramirez tussle was the marquee attraction of the Manny Pacquiao Championship Boxing offering at the San Andres Sports Complex in Malate, Manila.

Casimero was simply too much for the Mexican challenger as he outclassed Ramirez and put the former WBC FECOMBOX Champion down on multiple occasions leading up to the tenth-round finish.

The smaller Casimero uncorked a solid left uppercut and followed up with a vicious right hook that landed flush on the jaw, sending Ramirez’s mouthpiece flying before the Mexican dropped to the canvas.

With the win, Casimero extended his winning streak to four straight and now sets up a WBO Bantamweight World Championship unification bout against reigning titleholder Zolani Tete of South Africa.


Mexican Cesar Ramirez landed in Manila and immediately dropped by Plaza Mexico, a public square that commemorates the historic Galleon Trade involving Manila and Acapulco that spanned centuries.

Ramirez battles Filipino champion John Riel Casimero for the interim WBO bantamweight title on Aug. 24 at the San Andres Sports Complex in Malate. The Casimero-Ramirez duel is being presented by Manny Pacquiao’s MP Promotions in coordination with Sean Gibbons. Manila mayor Isko Moreno has been invited by MP Promotions to attend the official weigh in and fight itself.

By Nick Giongco /