Inoue may fight either Casimero, Donaire next

Japanese “monster” Naoya Inoue, as expected, tore down underdog challenger Michael Dasmarinas from the Philippines with body shots en route to a third-round knockout win and retained his two world titles on Sunday (Philippine time) in Las Vegas, USA.

WBA/IBF bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue (left) of Japan fights Michael Dasmarinas of Philippines during a title defense at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nevada. Inoue retained his titles with a third-round knockout. AFP
There was nothing Dasmarinas could do against the vaunted firepower of Inoue as he moved around the ring trying to evade the Japanese’ monstrous attack. He apparently failed as Inoue dropped body bombs on him, sending the Filipino down for third and final time in Round 3 of the scheduled 12-round tussle.

The first knockdown came in the second round with a timely dig to the liver of Dasmarinas.

In the third, Inoue again dropped the Filipino to the canvass with another liver shot. 

Dasmarinas barely beat the count as he stood up, but could no longer escape the ax as Inoue went for the same spot as the Filipino dropped to the floor, prompting the referee to wave the fight off.

Dasmarinas dropped to his third loss against 30 wins and a draw.

Even before the bout, observers were already talking about who’s next in line for Inoue, the World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation bantamweight king.

The boxing gods might have designed a grand plan for a Filipino to challenge Inoue next as a few hours before his defense of the title against Dasmarinas, news came out that World Boxing Council champ Nonito Donaire and World Boxing Organization titlist John Riel Casimero have agreed to face each other in a unification bout on August 14.

Donaire announced the fight on his social media accounts, showing pictures of him and Casimero. 

“My team does magic…Started camp last week. Belt #2 coming,” he said.

Casimero, who has been chasing Inoue, got the belt in 2019 with a TKO win against Zolani Tete and defended it against Duke Micah. He was supposed to face Donaire’s tormentor, Guillermo Rigondeaux on August 14, but the latter reportedly got injured, paving the way for the All–Filipino showdown with Donaire.

The four-division champion Donaire and the oldest bantamweight champ at 38, has been aching for a rematch with Inoue, who dealt him a unanimous decision loss in the World Boxing Super Series on Nov. 6, 2019.

He came back strong to snatch the WBC plate following a sensational 4th-round KO win over previous unbeaten Nordine Oubaali last May 29.

Inoue is now left with no alibi to face the winner of the Donaire-Casimero tussle to settle once and for all the ultimate king of the bantamweight division.

Topics: Naoya Inoue , Michael Dasmarinas , Boxing , World Boxing Council , Nonito Donaire , John Riel Casimero
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