Former WBO bantamweight champion John Riel Casimero announced he is set to fight veteran Japanese boxer Ryo Akaho on Dec. 3.
Casimero made the announcement on his Facebook page.
"Ito finally na talaga ang hinihintay ng lahat," said the hard-hitting Ormoc native, who has not fought since beating Guillermo Rigondeaux in Aug. 2021.
Casimero was supposed to defend the WBO crown against mandatory challenger Paul Butler but had issues leading to the weigh-in, prompting the WBO to strip him of the title.
Akaho is a veteran with 39 wins, 2 defeats with 26 KOs. In his most recent fight, he knocked out Filipino Edrin Dapudong.
Casimero is determined to bag a convincing win against Akaho since it could lead him to a shot against WBA (Super), IBF, and WBC bantamweight king Naoya Inoue.
"Posibleng maglaban kami ni Naoya Inoue pagkatapos nito, kasi si Naoya Inoue last fight na lang daw niya tapos aakyat ng 122 so kailangan talaga nating matapos ang laban na ito para ang next fight si Naoya Inoue," said Casimero.
The fight could take place in either South Korea or Japan, he said.