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Sultan vows all-out war versus Casimero

Former two-division world champion Johnriel ‘Quadro Alas’ Casimero (R) and IBF Intercontinental super flyweight champion Jonas ‘Zorro’ Sultan of the ALA Gym pose during a press conference yesterday at St. Mark's Hotel, four days ahead of their IBF junior bantamweight title eliminator on the undercard of the ‘Pinoy Pride 42: Clash for Glory’. Paul Jun E. Rosaroso

CEBU, Philippines — Expect lots of fireworks when former two-division world champion Johnriel ‘Quadro Alas’ Casimero (24-3, 15KOs)  battles Jonas ‘Zorro’ Sultan (13-3, 9KOs) of the fabled ALA Gym in an IBF junior bantamweight title eliminator on the undercard of the hotly-anticipated ‘Pinoy Pride 42: Clash for Glory’ this Saturday night at the Pacific grand ballroom of the Waterfront-Cebu City Hotel and Casino.

The 12-round bout is crucial for both fighters as the winner will earn a mandatory shot at reigning IBF super flyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas.

He may be the underdog but Sultan is hell-bent on waging an all-out war against Casimero.

“I think the pressure is on him (Casimero),” said Sultan in a press conference yesterday at the St. Mark’s Hotel. “He has more experience than me and he has already fought in a bigger stage. But I never considered that as a factor in this fight.”

“In my last fight, everyone gave me a small chance of winning because my opponent was a veteran and a former champion but I knocked him out,” said Sultan, referring to his eighth round knockout victory over former WBC flyweight champion Sonny Boy Jaro last May 7 in Angono, Rizal.

“For me, records won’t matter. I trained hard for this fight and I can’t let this opportunity to get a world title shot slip away,” added the 25-year-old brawler.

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Casimero gamely welcomed the challenge. For him, it’s nothing personal but he won’t allow Sultan to derail his plan of fighting for his third world title in different weight divisions.

“Whether it’s against a foreigner or a Filipino, it doesn’t matter for me. I treat every opponent equal. My goal is to be a three-division world champion and expect the best Casimero this Saturday,” said Casimero, who once held court in the WBO/IBF light flyweight and IBF flyweight divisions.

The pride of Ormoc City made an impressive debut in the 115-pound class with a lopsided unanimous decision win over Jecker Buhawe last June 25 in Iligan City.

The 'Pinoy Pride 42' is headlined by Milan ‘El Metodico’ Melindo (36-2, 13KOs), who will defend his IBF light flyweight belt for the first time against IBO titlist Hekkie ‘Hexecutioner’ Budler (31-2, 10KOs) of South Africa in a surefire explosive showdown of world champions.

In the supporting bout, light welterweight contender Jason 'El Niño' Pagara (40-2, 25KOs) will take on Kenyan James 'Onyi' Onyango (23-11, 19KOs). (FREEMAN)

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