PANAMA WELCOMES TEAM CASIMERO; JOHNRIEL PASSES MEDICAL CHECK-UP (PHOTOS)
By Carlos Costa
13 Mar 2013
Team Casimero arrives Panama.
PANAMA CITY, Panama -- Casimero welcomed in Panama. Filipino IBF Jr. Flyweight World Champion Johnriel Casimero and his team were warmly welcomed in Panama and appeared relaxed and in high spirits during the successful medical checkup performed by doctors of the Panama Boxing Commission today at the Megapolis Convention Center of the plush Hard Rock Hotel in Panama City, Panama.
Casimero and his team, all wearing their Omega Team outfit with the Filipino flag stamped on it, is in the Latin American nation of Panama for his world title defense against IBF mandatory challenger Luis Alberto “Pan Blanco” Rios of Panama.
During today's unofficial weighin, Casimero came in at 113 lbs, 5 lbs over the contracted weight of 108 lbs while challenger Rios stepped the scales at 111 lbs, just 3 lbs over. The official IBF weigh-in ceremony will be performed at the Megapolis Convention Center on Friday (Saturday, Philippine time). Both fighters appeared to be in good physical condition according to the medical doctors of the Panama boxing Commission.
The fight will take place this Saturday night in Panama (Sunday morning in the Philippines) and will be broadcast live on ABS CBN. In addition, the event will be broadcast live on open TV in Panama and to the whole Latin America Continent as well.
Referee and judges for the Casimero-Rios are all from the United States. Supervisor is Mr. Daryl Peoples of New Jersey USA, president of the International Boxing Federation (IBF).
“We feel happy and well here in Panama. Everything is going perfect. Panama fans and officials are being great to us. We are overwhelmed by their attention. I can feel the warmth of the Panama people and the weather is exactly the same as in Cebu (central Philippines). We expect to score a big win to retain the world title,” said Casimero’s promoter Sammy Gelo-Ani.
Casimero, 22, of Ormoc, Leyte, was accompanied by Sammy Gelo-Ani, team manager Mr. Dela Merced, team assistant Castillo and head trainer Christopher “Ping Ping” Tepura, 30, of Iligan City.
Casimero and Rios meet each other for the first time today in Panama.
Casimero is being interviewed by the Panamanian media upon his arrival.
Challenger Luis Alberto Rios of Panama pose with his managers and trainers at the Megapolis Convention Center in Panama.
Filipino promoter Sammy Gelo-Ani is being welcomed to Panama by Tycon Jacobo Torres, owner of Hard Rock Hotel Panama.
Gello-ani (C) pose with Panamanians Carlos Gonzalez and Oliver Gomez at Megapolis Convention Center.
Casimero is being examined by a doctor from the Panama Boxing Commission.
Casimero (L) and Rios (R) pose with the author (C).
A view of Panama city.
Together with Casimero is another Filipino world title challenger John Mark Apolinario who is scheduled to fight a rematch with Panamanian 2-division world champion Roberto “La Araña” Vasquez for the WBA interim bantamweight title.
Present during the medical checkup was the president of the Panama Boxing Commission Rolando Marcos-Hermoso, Panama Senator Javier Zuñiga and Commissioner Jose Oliver Gomez, among others.
During their stay in Panama, the Filipinos will be billeted at the plush 5-star Hard Rock Hotel suites in Panama City, whose Megapolis Convention Center will be the venue for the double world title fights. The owner of the luxurious hotel, Panama tycoon Jacobo Torres, gave a personal welcome to Sammy Gelo-Ani.
A presser for the two Filipino fighters and their Panamanian opponents is scheduled for tomorrow. Philboxing will be present.
TICKET SALES EXCELLENT
According to the promotional company, ticket sales are going really well. Prices are as follows:
Ringside tickets are priced at US$250 (PHP10,152) per person. General admission is at US$100 (PHP4,060).
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