Casimero’s 10th-round TKO of Lazarte sparks ugly riot in Argentina


Filipino junior flyweight prospect Johnriel Casimero’s 10th-round TKO of former titleholder Luis Lazarte sparked an ugly riot in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on Friday.

Casimero (16-2, 10 knockouts), a 21-year-old former title challenger from the Philippines, battled on even terms with Lazarte, a 40-year-old former IBF 108-pound beltholder, until badly rocking the grizzled Argentine veteran in the ninth round. Lazarte (49-11-2, 18 KOs), an awkward fighter who is known for rough tactics in the ring, was stopped in the 10th round.

Both fighters were penalized points for blatant fouls during the fight, which only added to the passion of the partisan crowd. Before the decision could be announced in favor of Casimero, who earned the IBF’s interim junior flyweight title with the hard-fought, bottles and chairs began raining from the fans.

One crazed fan stormed the ring and tried to assault members of Casimero’s team as they were hit by flying bottles and chairs. Other fans climbed onto the ring apron where they tossed more chairs at Casimero and the terrified fighter’s cornermen. One of Casimero’s team members, American agent Sean Gibbons, was hit by a chair and then stomped by these fans before he was able to roll out of the ring where security escorted him from the venue.

Casimero and his team were eventually able to escape the ring and exit the club where the fight was held. No serious injuries have been reported as of press time.

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