Nonito Donaire rumoured to be OUT of Ryan Burnett WBSS fight


Ryan Burnett [19(9)-0] may face a late change of opponent ahead of his World Boxing Super Series quarter-final next week.

The Belfast bantamweight is due to defend his WBA belt versus Filipino legend Nonito Donaire [38(24)-5(1)] in Glasgow on Saturday November 3rd.

However, rumour is abound that four-weight world champion Donaire is set to pull out of the clash at the SSE Hydro.

Irish-Boxing.com have been aware of whispers regarding the withdrawal of Donaire over the past 48 hours and the rumours have become public on social media this afternoon.

In this time there have been numerous promotional posts from the WBSS which have included Donaire.

If the 35-year-old, who was stepping down two weight divisions for the fight, is indeed out then Burnett will face first reserve Paul Butler.

Liverpool’s Butler [26(14)-2(1)] is a former IBF bantamweight champion and a challenger for the IBF belts at 115lbs and 118lbs – his most recent fight being a dominant defeat to Puerto Rican Manny Rodriguez.

The 29-year-old was in camp preparing for a fight on the undercard next week versus former European champion Karim Guerfi. The Frenchman, managed by Assassin Boxing, would become first reserve if Butler is bumped into the tournament proper.

Burnett is the first seed for the eight-man single-elimination tournament and chose Donaire at the Draft Gala in Moscow during the summer.

The South East Asian is a popular figure among Irish fight fans following his fight with Belfast featherweight Carl Frampton back in April.

The Burnett-Donaire fight was hoped to take place at the SSE Odyssey Arena in Belfast but, with the venue unavailable, it is instead taking place as a double-header alongside Josh Taylor’s light welterweight quarter-final versus Ryan Martin.

Burnett’s fight is the fourth and final bantamweight quarter-final and the winner will progress to a unification versus WBO king Zolani Tete, who beat Russian amateur star Misha Aloyan, in the semi-finals in the new year. The other semi-final will see IBF champ Rodriguez defend versus Japanese tournament favourite Naoya Inoue following their respective wins over Jason Moloney and Juan Carlos Payano.

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie