John Riel Casimero is the IBF Light Flyweight World Champion and former WBO Light Flyweight Interim Champion from Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines.
“I was 12 years old when I started boxing. I used to get into a lot of street fights. One time I was fighting three guys at once. A boxing trainer saw me and asked if I was interested in becoming a boxer.”
Casimero is a former national amateur boxing champion. He finished fourth-year high school and used to play soccer during interschool meets. He still does during his spare time. If he did not fight professionally, he would have wanted to become a policeman. He is the second of four siblings. His father is not a prize fighter but his brother, Jason recently turned pro.
Casimero won the Interim IBF light flyweight title in a wild scene on February 10 of this year by TKO 10 over hometown favorite Luis Alberto Lazarte at Club Once Unidos, Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Casimero has been deducted a point in each of rounds four and eight and was down once in the fifth round; Lazarte was deducted a point in round six and down twice in the ninth and once in the tenth round.
When the TKO was finally awarded to Casimero, the pro-Lazarte crowd went ballistic, throwing several chairs and other debris into the ring, hitting Casimero and his cornermen.
He was crowned the full IBF Light Flyweight Champion after winning a 12-round split decision over Pedro Guevara at the Centro de Convenciones in Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico, on August 4.