By: Michael Kane
Floyd Mayweather wasn’t the only ‘Boxing’ bout that took place in Japan this weekend. Sunday 30th would see a first title defence of Masayuki Ito’s WBO Junior Lightweight title at the Ota City General Gymnasium in Tokyo.
Ito faced his mandatory challenger, Evgeny Chuprakov (20-1, 10 Kos), however the 28 year old Russian proved to be no match for Ito, who won via a 7th round knockout in a fairly one sided bout.
Despite suffering a second round cut, from an accidental clash of heads, Ito dominated the fight, landing at will against a reckless Chuprakov. The Russian stood in front of Ito, trying to land wild shots and was an easy target for Ito.
The fight culminated in the 7th, when Ito landed several hard shots which knocked out the Russians gumshield, as the ref called a timeout to replace it Chuprakov’s corner threw the towel in.
The 27 year old Ito (27-1-1. 13 KOs) is tipped to return to the United States next year, having claimed the vacant belt when he defeated Christopher Diaz in July.
Also on the card was Takuma Inoue who won the vacant WBC interim Bantamweight World Title when he defeated Petch CP Freshmart by unanimous decision, all three judges scored it 117-111.
25 year old Freshmart (48-1,33 KOs) was fighting outside of Thailand for the first time and came up short against 23 year old Inoue (13-0, 3 KOs) who was a step up in class to Freshmart.
Inoue now becomes the mandatory challenger for the winner of the vacant title between Rau’shee Warren and Nordine Oubaali, who meet on January 19th on the undercard of the Pacquiao and Broner fight.
The third world title on the card would see Ken Shiro (15-0, 8 Kos) successfully defend his WBC junior Flyweight title against Mexican Saul ‘Baby’ Juarez (24-9-2, 13 KOs). This was another one sided bout for the Japanese crowd to enjoy, Shiro was quicker throughout and scores of 120-108, 119-109 and 119-109 reflect his dominance.
Moving across the sea to Macau and another triple header of world title bouts that took place today, Monday 31st.
First up was Filipino Donnie Nietes (42-1-5, 23 KOs) joining compatriots Nonito Donaire and Manny Pacquiao as a four weight world champion after winning against Kazuto Ioka (23-2, 13 KOs). This was a split decision win for the 36 year old Nietes, who becomes a world champion again ten years after his first title win. The general consensus is that Ioka was robbed as most viewers had him winning, myself included. The judges however scored it 116-112 for Ioka, 116-112 and 118-110 for Nietes. Nietes won the WBO World Super Flyweight title.
Hiroto Kyoguchi (12-0, 9 KOs) can now add a second weight class to his resume as a champion, the former minimum weight champion, won the WBA Super Light Flyweight title forcing the champion Hekkie Budler’s (32-4, 10 KOs) corner to stop the fight in the 10th round. Kyoguchi worked the body throughout which eventually took its toll on the South African.
The final world title bout saw an easy defence for IBF Flyweight champion Moruti Mthalane (37-2, 25 KOs) who was too experienced and too strong for his Japanese opponent Mashiro Sakamoto (13-2, 9 KOs). The fight ended after Sakamoto suffered a swollen eye after the 10th round.
Boxing Insider Interview Part 2: Tomoki Kameda is Crafting his Style
By: Kirk Jackson
Questions for the former WBO Bantamweight Champion Tomoki Kameda 31-2 (19 KO’s):
“Kameda-ke Saishū Heiki”
Boxing Insider: Our last interview, you mentioned you are a blend of more than three styles. There is the Japanese style of boxing, Cuban style and the Mexican style. It’s important to acknowledge there is a generalization to each style, but there are exceptions to each style. There are unique traits from each style, can you elaborate on the characteristics from each style you’ve absorbed and blended into your hybrid style of fighting?
Tomoki Kameda: There are few that I can mention. Let’s say with Mexican style, body shots and upper-cut and the close range brawling. From the Cubans are the movements especially the legs and the fighting strategy. From the Japanese style, the heart of a samurai and the aggressiveness.
BI: Can you also talk about the other styles or traits from other styles you have?
TK: I am learning from Filipino style as well. I watched a lot [Manny] Pacquiao’s and [Nonito] Donaire’s fights and the Filipino trainers improve my speed and the levels of punches. Level is that the volume of punches they can deliver upper part and/or lower part of the body.
BI: When you prepare for an opponent, do you have a particular style or certain strategies in mind you want to implement based on your opponent? Is the objective based on their physical traits, strengths and weaknesses? Are the technical deficiencies or aspects of their style what you look to exploit with your versatility?
TK: I need to know my opponents so I can prepare myself for it. Of course, I have the basic skills already, my basic weapons if we put it that way. From there I can add more the necessary skills I need for a particular opponent. I have to study all the aspects of my opponent, so when I am in the ring, everything will be automatic.
BI: Or would you prefer to have your opponent react to your actions?
TK: When the fighters are in the ring, they want to dictate the pace. I want to dominate, so I want to impose to the other fighter my actions.
BI: Can you discuss some of the things you learned from your father and older brothers? I wouldn’t want for you to reveal too many secretes, but is what you learned from your family, certain moves you integrated into your style; or more so the philosophy and mentality on what it takes to be a successful fighter at the highest level?
TK: I think it is more of the genes, we, the Kameda family is blessed with a good set of genes. What I mean about that is we won’t have a hard time in taking care of our bodies. We can always make the weight and maintain it. Another thing is that since we are family, we are always training together. Giving tips and support.
BI: There is the Jeet Kune Do style of fighting heavily influenced by Bruce Lee; Jeet Kune Do is not fixed or patterned, it is essentially a philosophy/fighting style with guiding thoughts that serve as a guide for movement and action. Can that be a way of analyzing your style?
TK: In way, it is like that since I incorporate different styles that work for me. I could easily change my style depends on my opponent.
BI: Your personality stands out when you fight; I believe it transcends and many observers watching gauge a sense of who you are. It’s artistic; I believe it’s a good trait because it connects the observer to the athlete. Can you sense the personality or the mentality of an opponent when you’re in the ring with them?
TK: Everything is unpredictable once you are inside the ring. When the first punch is thrown, your body will be in auto mode. You will remember everything what you have trained for. It is more of feeling myself and giving me confidence.
BI: We’ve discussed your ability to change range. I believe your versatility; the ability to change range makes you an unpredictable fighter. Can you elaborate on other elements in which makes you unpredictable? Is it your speed, different angles, or another facet of your style you possess?
TK: It depends with my opponent. If my opponent likes to move a lot then I have to employ a strategy for that. I won’t elaborate the details, but I guess you know what I mean.
BI: Is there a facet you want to add to improve as a fighter?
TK: In all of my fights, it is a learning experience. I would know afterwards what I need to improve on and what skills I need to maintain. This will make me a better fighter.
BI: Do you believe you have any weaknesses?
TK: Everyone has their own weaknesses, for me, I believe it is my speed. I need to train more for that in order to be faster.
BI: Do you have an all-time dream match-up you would have liked to participate in?
TK: There is none in particular. I would love to fight whoever is the best. I want to test myself on how much I can achieve… but if I have my way, I believe a fight with Manny Pacquiao would be a dream match.
BI: Is there anyone specifically right now you want to fight?
TK: Whoever is holding the belt right now is the one I want to fight. I want to get that belt again. It’s mine.
Thanks again Tomoki Kameda!
*Kameda is currently ranked in the top ten for both the WBC and WBA sanctioning bodies and is seeking another world title in the near future.
Boxing Insider Interview with Tomoki Kameda
By: Kirk Jackson
Questions for former WBO Bantamweight Champion Tomoki Kameda 31-2 (19 KO’s):
“Kameda-ke Saishū Heiki”
BI: Thanks again for your time Mr. Kameda; I hope everything is well with you.
BI: You come from a fighting family; your father is an amazing trainer and your older brothers are world renowned champions. Do you consider yourself the best fighter in your family? If not as of yet, what will it take to be recognized as the best fighter in your family?
TK: I believe that all of us, the 3 brothers are the best. We have achieved several records. The oldest, Koki, was able to get 3 different divisions championship. The first one in Japan to achieve it. Daiki was 2 different divisions champion and then me. I was able to get one championship belt and the first one in Japan to get the Bantam weight championship belt. With that records, we were able to get a Guinness Book of World Records recognition as the most siblings to win world boxing titles. To be the best fighter in the family…our father has that honor. He trained all 3 of us.
BI: Is being the best fighter in your family important to you? Is there a sibling rivalry between you three? Does that provide you with extra incentive to train harder and seek bigger challenges?
TK: As I have mentioned all 3 of us are the best and yes, it is important. It is natural to have sibling rivalries as any siblings would have. In our case, growing up with my brothers has helped me a lot in training. I have learned a lot from them. The moves, their advice and all other stuff. I maybe the youngest, but my older brothers helped me a lot in order to achieve what they have achieved.
BI: Can you describe growing up in the rough environments of Osaka?
TK: Is it really rough? We don’t see it that way. I think it was ordinary. I believe that this is a misconception from the outsiders. If they think it that way, it creates an image that we, from Osaka, are tough. Yes, we are. Osaka has the Kameda brothers.
BI: At age 15 you moved to Mexico in pursuit of dreams and to essentially to search for great challenges. Can you talk about the cultural transition and the difficulties adjusting to a new language, culture and surroundings?
TK: The first time I went to Mexico, it was really difficult. Number one is the language, I didn’t know any Spanish language. Of course, the culture itself. Very different from where I grew up. But Mexican people are very warm and friendly. I was able to adjust and adapt the new environment. They are very kind and helpful.
When I started training, Mexican style of boxing training is different from what my father had trained me. It was good for me because it was an added knowledge, an addition to my boxing IQ. I had to ask a lot of questions to my coach while I was training. It is very important to learn everything they taught me and the depth of this kind of training.
BI: Based on your origin, it can be stated you possess traditional elements from the “Japanese” fighting style however, you moved to Mexico to learn from Mexican trainers. It can be said you have the influence of the “Mexican” style fighting as well. Your current trainer Ismael Salas is from Cuba and familiar with the Cuban School of fighting. Is it accurate to say you are a blend of all three styles?
TK: Yes, you can say that. I am a blend of different fighting styles, but not just 3. I believe it is very important to learn different fighting styles to make you a flexible fighter. Also now, I am training in Japan but with Filipino trainers.
BI: In the past you stated you are a mix between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather. When watching your fights, I can see elements comparable to Mayweather; your precision, patience, timing and ability to change range. Which elements from each fighter do you feel like you represent?
TK: I want to be a hybrid fighter. From Pacquiao I was able to learn that a big heart is also essential when in the ring. Get his stamina, never lose steam from the beginning of the fight until the very last round. From Mayweather, yes, you are correct that I am learning to be precise, patient and the change of range. It makes me an unpredictable fighter. Opponents will be confused as to what element I’ll use when fighting.
BI: Mayweather and Pacquiao retired last year and were long considered the best fighters pound for pound for the past decade or so. Who is the best fighter pound for pound in your eyes and why?
TK: Yes, both of them are considered the best fighters pound for pound, but nobody broke that mold compared to the late Muhammad Ali, may he rest in peace. Ali has the speed and stamina. He owns every part of the ring. Overall performance is spectacular, that’s why he is the greatest.
BI: You are a world champion; first Japanese fighter to win a WBO title. What is your most rewarding accomplishment as a professional so far?
TK: Winning the title itself is the most rewarding. That is the goal of every boxers. I was able to achieve that goal. Worked hard for it, you can say blood, sweat and tears. When I was able to get that belt I really felt I’m on the top of the world. Plus it helped us, the 3 brothers, to get a Guinness record.
BI: What are your goals for this year and beyond?
TK: I am setting my eyes on a higher division. Most probably the Super Bantam. That will be my next goal and achieve that goal.
BI: Do you plan on staying in the Bantamweight division? Do you plan on moving up to Super Bantamweight and how many weight classes do you feel like you can comfortably move up?
TK: Yes, I have the plan to move up to Super Bantamweight. I have mentioned that it is my next goal. I think I could still be comfortable with Super Featherweight and/or the Lightweight division. We’ll see. I want to achieve it step by step. As they say, “there is nowhere else to go but up.”
BI: Your fights against Jamie McDonnell were extremely competitive and the decisions could have gone either way. Depending on who you ask, some may say you won both if not at least one of the fights. What did you learn from those encounters that you’ll utilize moving forward in your career?
TK: The two fights went the other way, but it is a learning experience. After those fights it made me realize that there is more that I need to learn as a fighter. I am now even more eager to train and love boxing more. It was a big motivation for me. It makes me hungrier to get that belt again and even more up. I am very enthusiastic and highly motivated in training.
BI: What is the toughest thing you had to deal with as a professional?
TK: Being a champion and staying that way is the most difficult thing to deal with. Everyone sees you as a target. They want to bring you down. I should always train in order to be at a higher level. Other fighters are training hard as well. I have to be a step or more ahead.
BI: Aside from your unique life story and background, what is a trait that separates you from other fighters?
TK: Many fighters would claim that they are hybrid fighters, but that is the trait that separates me from them. You know my background and what I have achieved. I trained in many different fighting styles. I am learning continuously and my enthusiasm in fighting is always high. Like a child that is always learning and always want to achieve my goal.
BI: How can the fans get in touch with you and follow what you’re doing? Do you have a message for the fans out there?
TK: My fans can follow me in my Instagram, @tomokikameda and also Twitter, @tomokikameda. To my fans out there, I appreciate that you are continuously supporting me. Now I am training harder to be the world champion again. Your support is giving me more energy and motivation. Thank you for that.
Weekly Round Up
By: Ben Underwood
ASIAN WEEKLY ROUND UP
WBA ORDERS TAGUCHI VS MIYAZAKI
Ryoichi Taguchi must defend his WBA Light Flyweight title against his mandatory and former WBA Minimumweight champion Ryo Miyazaki (21-1-3,15 KO’s). This will be Taguchi’s fourth defence since winning the belt from Alberto Rossel in 2014 and is a step up in class after fighting a string of lower level challengers.The two teams have 30 days from last wednesday (8th June)to come to some agreement and being as they were already discussing the bout, it shouldn’t be too hard to come to some agreement.
Miyazaki of the Ioka gym is looking to become a two weight world champion after a 4 fight winning streak , but really hasnt been fighting opponents that would deem him a mandatory place. The last person to beat Miyasaki is Fahlan Sakreerin Jr in late 2013. The bout is said to be staged in August although a venue is yet to be decided.
MASUDA WINS WAR WITH KAWAGUCHI
2 years ago Kentaro Masuda and Yu Kawaguchi engaged in a fantastic ,engaging battle that saw Masuda win by technical decision after 10 rounds of action. This time the rematch staged at the Korakuen Hall, was a cauldren of hard punches ,blood and pure will to win. The contest was a real treat for the fans as they witnessed a bloody war for the Japanese Bantamweight title.
Both men didnt seem to have much respect for the others style and the action began from the first bell as they both landed meaty shots. The early rounds were very competitve but Masuda was ahead on two judges cards and Kawaguchi was bleeding from the left eye.
Sensing that he needed to turn it around, Kawaguchi put the pressure on in round 6 and forced masuda to fight at a higher pace. In round 9 it looked as though Masuda had hit the end of the road as he began to tire, but by the 10th and final round he came out fast and energetic and was ready to go to war for 3 more minutes.
Credit must go to both fighters for giving it their all in a close ,bloody battle that saw Masuda come out a split decision winner with scores of 96-94,96-95 and 96-95 for Kawaguchi.
KOGAWA DEFENDS AGAINST OTAKE
Former WBC title challenger Takuya Kogawa will defend his Japanese Flyweight title on July 15th against ranked contender Masafumi Otake, in what will be his 3rd defense in a year. Takuya won the title in 2015 from Shigetaka Ikehara and had two hard defenses against Tetsuma Hayashi and Masayuki Kuroda and looks to have an easier night on paper when he faces Otake.
Masafumi has had a long career and has faced nearly everybody on the Japanese circuit and with this being his only shot at the title to date, he will be looking to rip up the script and sail off into the sunset with the title.
The bout will be held at the Korakuen Hall as the main event of Dangan 163.
SHIRO IN DOUBLE TITLE FIGHT
As reported in May, Japanese prospect Ken Shiro will be defending his national title against Toshimasa Ouchi , it has been announced that it will not only be for Shiro’s Japanese title, but also for the OPBF Light Flyweight title. The bout is set to take place at the EDION Arena ,Osaka and could be a spring board for a world title shot for Shiro. Ouchi will be looking to become a champion for the first time after only getting a draw against Masayuki Kuroda for the Japanese title in 2012.
SHIMING DOESNT SHINE IN US
Powder puff Flyweight Zou Shiming made hard work of his US debut as he laboured to a shut ot decision against Hungarian Jozsef Ajtai ,a man who was stopped in two by featherweight champion Andrew Selby in November.
Shimings lack of power seemed to be the only reason why there wasn’t a spectacular knockout as Ajtai looked so scared at times and was content to get on his bike and survive, the crowd became restless because of Zou’s inability to finish .The Hungarian was just looking to spoil and negatively didnt look to for the victory as Shiming took the decision on all 3 judges scorecards with whitewash scores of 100-89.
The win certainly won’t do much for Zou’s stock and may have to work on his power in order to get the credit his talent deserves. The Chinese boxer and former 2-time Olympic champion improves to 8-1,2 KO’s, while Ajtai falls to 15-3, 10 KO’s.
JAPANESE DOUBLE TO RETURN IN AUGUST
WBA Super Flyweight champion Kohei Kono and WBA Light Flyweight champion Ryoichi Taguchi will be defending their titles on August 31st at the Ota Ward Gymnasium. The opponents are yet to be announced, but there are talks of each man defending against their mandatories. These would be former WBA Minimumweight champion Ryo Miyazaki for Taguchi and Kono will defend against interim champion Luis Conception.
It is more than likely Watanabe will want those bouts for an end of year show. Taguchi is 24-2-1, 11 KO’s and Kono is 32-8-1, 13 KO’s.
BERCHELT TO DEFEND AGAINST PIRIYAPINYO
WBO interim Featherweight champion Miguel Berchelt (29-1, 26 KO’s) is set to defend against Thailand’s Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo (61-2, 41 KO’s) with the winner facing Vasyl Lomachenko for the WBO full title.Lomachenko has already beaten Chonlatarn and the only other loss on his record is to Chris John but is willing to go for his title shot should he win. Both fighters have high Knockout ratios and looks to be a entertaining fight with a few knockdowns.
FUJIMOTO GETS TOP BILLING ON AUGUST 2ND
Kdoebi Held a press announcement today (06/15/2016) to give details of their show in August . The main event will be a Heavyweight bout between Japanese champion Kyotaro Fujimoto and an opponent yet to be named, Fujimoto (14-1,7 KO’s) will be looking to chase a world title shot should he prevail
World ranked Yukinori Oguni who is in the running to face the winner of Shingo Wake and Jonathan Guzman of their IBF title fight. Oguni has yet to recieve news on an opponent ,but I imagine it will be a stay busy fight so he can prepare for his shot.
Fomer world title challenger will be carrying on his ring return as Motoki Sasaki looks for a third outing on the show . With a record of 40-10-1,25 KO’s Motoki Sasaki will hear of her opponents name sometime this week.
Weekly Round Up Around the World
By: Ben Underwood
MAKABU RECIEVES AWARD
After Llunga Makabu’s devastating loss to Tony Bellew in liverpool,England last weekend, he has recieved the Golden Gloves Africa 2016 award on June 4th for being one of the top cruiserweights in the world.Even though Makabu lost his first title shot ,he is still touted to become a world champion and this award shows that he is embraced by Africa.
LARRY EKUNDAYO INJURED
Talented Nigerian Larry ‘The natural’ Ekundayo was all set to defend his African Union welterweight title against Tanzanian Saidi Mundi on the 4th of June at London’s famous York Hall, Bethnal green. Unbeaten Ekundayo unfortunately has a serious hand injury that he recieved during training ,in which the fight has to be postponed and rescheduled for later in the year.
Ekundayo won the vacated belt by outpointing Joseph lamptey in october of 2015. The other title he has lifted is the Prizefighter trophy in 2012.
KOSEKI VACATES WBA MINIMUMWEIGHT CROWN
Talented Japanese icon Momo Koseki has given up her WBA crown that she won by outpointing Ayaka Miyao in october. Koseki will continue to defend her WBC title and also looking to expand her Japanese record setting 16 defenses of the belt.Momo’s next bout will be announced shortly. Koseki has a record of 21-2-1,7 KO’s.
OKADA DEFENDS TITLE IN JULY
As I reported a few weeks ago that Suyon Takayama will challenge for Jack Brubakers OPBF welterweight belt on July 25th, another title fight will be added to the bill,this will be a bout for the Japanese Junior Welterweight belt held by Hiroki Okada.Japanese-Brazilian Cristano Aoqui is his opponent and with a win will extend his unbeaten record to 13-0 and will possibly set him up for an OPBF title shot.
Aoqui has been awarded this fight off the back of a thrilling win over Ryosuke Takami, Aoqui will be looking to win his first Japanese title. Cristano was once touted to fight Takayama up at welterweight but it seems the lower weight is the better option for him.
KAZUKI TANAKA WILL FIGHT SAKAMOTO
At the EDION Arena Osaka, Kuzuki Tanaka (5-0,4 KO’s) will be taking a massive step up in class when he takes on Japanese ranked Hideo Sakamoto. On paper this is a mouth watering clash which sees Sakamoto coming off a stoppage loss to Kentaro Masudo ,the Japanese champion and will be looking to get back into winning ways and will almost certainly come to fight.
The supporting bout will see Fuko Komura making her debut as a professional in a 4 rounder against limited Koari Nagai (0-1). This looks to be an easy bout for the school girl Komura ,but it is the chief support on the bill and could perhaps be more competitive than people think. the show will take place on august 7th.
WAKE VS GUZMAN DOUBLE HEADER WITH IOKA VS LARA
On July 20th at the EDION Arena it was leaked that Kazuto Ioka (19-1, 11) will be defending his WBA Flyweight title against Nicaraguan Keyvin Lara (18-1-1,6 KO’s). This will be Lara’s first voyage into a world title fight and will be looking to take home the belt that Ioka won from Juan Carlos Reveco via a majority decision and retained it in a rematch by TKO. It must be noted though Lara looks to be up against it as Ioka is a former minumumweight world title holder (WBC and WBA), a Light Flyweight world champion (WBA) and after a split decision loss to Amnat Ruenroeng for the IBF Flyweight bauble came the Reveco fight that made him a 3 weight world champion.
The other title fight on the card shows Shingo Wake (20-4-2, 12) go head to head with unbeaten Jonathan Guzman ,who has 21 vicories all inside the distance with 1 draw, for the vacant IBF Super Bantamweight title. Southpaw Wake of Tokyo, is former OPBF champion will have to have his witts about him as Guzman’s record suggests that he is obviously a banger. This bout is the co-feature and has been said to be in the negotiation phase for several weeks.
Also on the card Takahiro Yamamoto will be defending his OPBF belt against Filipino Rex Wao. Rex (11-2,9 KO’s) has lost 2 of his last 3 and surely needs to make a statement to keep his career alive.
Junior Middleweight Yuki Nonaka (29-8-3, 9 KO’s) will also be defending his Japanese title against Ryosuke Maruki (12-3-1,7 KO’s)that he won in a bout with Kengo Nagashima for the vacant title in 2014.
SHIMIZU DITCHES THE VEST
There has been much speculation over the career of London 2012 bronze medalist Satoshi Shimizu. Within the next 2 weeks it is said that Shimizu will end his career in the unpaid ranks and will be turning professional with the Ohashi stable of talented fighters.It is believed that Satoshi is looking to face top opponents fairly quickly as he has not really got time on his side having turned 30. The Amatuer stand out has a good relationship with the Japanese amatuer body and will be welcome back to the amatuers should he ever want to return. The announcement will be between June 10th and June 15th and we will look to see him out before the end of the year.
MARUTA IN BID FOR WBC YOUTH TITLE
Hinata Maruta has been fast tracked to his first title bid when he comes up against fellow unbeaten Wilbert Berondo in a 10 rounder for the WBC youth title at the Sumiyoshi Ward Centre on 31st July.Maruta is a big prospect and is expected to quickly work his way to world contension and this is a step in the right direction. Having only his 3rd fight with 1 stoppage Maruta is a heavy favourite to win the title but little is known about his Filipino opponent. Berondo has wins over Ricky Oyan and Arjet Caballes and he made his debut in 2014,nevertheless any unbeaten fighter will want to remain unbeaten and with 53 rounds under his belt is vastly more experienced than Hinata with a record of 10-0,4 KO’s.
KANEKO,SUEYOSHI AND OTO ALL VICTORIOUS
Records can be decieving as Daiki Kaneko a loser of 3 of his last 6 came out a deserved winner against Ribo Takahata at the Korakuen Hall via a 10 round decision (98-91 on all cards). While Kaneko was seeking a knockout throughout the fight the old tale came true ‘when you go looking for a knockout ,it never come’,and for his efforts Daiki had to settle for the decision. Now Kaneko can improve to 23-5-3, 15 KO’s ,while Takahata slumps to 12-7-1,4 KO’s.
In a minor upset Masaru Sueyoshi (12-1, 7 KO’s) recorded his 9th win in a row by outpointing Shingo Eto (17-5-1, 9 KO’s)as he stepped up in class to claim a hard fought 8 round decision with scores of 77-75,78-75, 78-74. Although many of the rounds were hard to score ,the right man was victorious.
Kenji Ono scored an 8th round stoppage over Takumi Suda ,which may mark a step towards the Japanese title. Ono (11-1,6 KO’s) is a very exciting fighter and he did not disappoint as his talent was shining through and was simply too much for Suda who now has an a record of 12-12-2, 3 KO’s.
HASEGAWA TO FACE HUGO RUIZ
Japans 2 -weight world champion Hozumi Hasegawa will make an attempt to become a 3-weight world titlist as he is set to take on WBC Super bantamweight champion Hugo Ruiz in Japan.There is no date set for the fight ,but it is rumoured to take place either in August or September . Hasegawa (35-5, 15 KO’s) is looking to impress in his home town and a win could make him a bigger icon than he already is and put him up there with the greats.
VIJENDER SINGH TO FIGHT KERRY HOPE
Indian superstar Vijender Sing is looking to extend his unbeaten record to 7 when he faces former European champion Kerry hope of wales for the WBO Asia Pacific Super middleweight title.Hope is fighting for the first time as a Super middle and has portrayed himself as the bad guy and has made it crystal clear that he is not there to make up the numbers. This marks Singh’s first bout in India having fought exclusively in Britain and the Republic of Ireland. the fight will take place at the Thyagaraj Stadium in New Delhi on July 16th.
RICHIE WINS OPBF BELT IN STYLE
Hikaru Nishida was confused and had no answer for the skills of Aussie Dwight Richie as he lost a lop-sided decision with scores of 118-110 on two cards and 119-109 on the other. For the first four rounds Nishida trying to pressure Richie but the speed of his light hitting opponent left him frustrated and while he had some success in the 6th round, it seemed to be a masterclass from the Australian. Nishida didnt have a plan B and Richie was the boss throughout the bout to run out the winner . Dwight improves to 14-0-0-4 with 1 KO and also claims the OPBF title in his first bout outside of his native Australia ,while Nishida is now 15-8-1,7 KO’s and is still the Japanese champion. Hikaru will defend his title in September
ASIAN WEEKLY ROUND UP
By: Ben Underwood
HYUN MI CHOI WINS WBF SUPER FEATHERWEIGHT BELT
Korean favourite Hyun Mi Choi added yet another title to her ever growing trophy cabinet by outpointing tough South African Unathi Myekeni.Choi who is unbeaten in 13 with one draw, has won WBA titles at both Featherwight and Super featherweight and this was billed originally as a WBA title fight but only seemed to be for the WBF which was vacated.
Choi boxed well throughout keeping Myekeni at bay to comfortably win by unaminous decision with scores of 100-91,99-92 and 98-93 ,But Myekeni certainly showed how tough she was and was game throughout the contest.
KANO VS TAKAYAMA FOR WBO MINIMUM BELT
Japanese prospect and highly talented teenager Riku Kano has come fresh off of an impressive win over former world champion Merlito Sabillo of the Philippines and winning the OPBF interim title in the process. Not even a month has passed since that win and it has been announced that Kano will now take on 3-time world champion Katsunari Takayama (30-8-0-1, 12KO’s) for the WBO belt.
This is an opportunity for Kano (10-1-1, 5KO’s) to make history in becoming the youngest ever Japanese world champion at 18 years,4 months and 4 days. This would surpass Hiroki Ioka when he won the WBC Minimumweight title from Mai Thomburifarm at 18 years, 9 months and 10 days in 1987.
The bout was announced at a press conference in Hyogo to be taken place on 20th August at the Komagatani sports park,sanda,Hyogo.
A lot can happen in 11 months ,especially if you are a man on a mission. Following a controversial unaminous decision to Amnat Ruenroeng, John Riel Casimero was that man on a mission on wednesday night at the Diamond Stadium in Beijing,China.Undefeated Ruenroeng was 11-0 as a professional and a former Olympian.He was very well known in China ,especially after beating popular fellow Olympian Zou Shiming.
During the opening two rounds the action was almost non-existant as if they were feeling each other out.In the third they both started to up the pace as Ruenroeng was frequently jabbing to both head and body,then a left hook caught Casimiro and sent him to the canvas, but the referee ruled it a slip.
Nobody expected the events of the fourth round to take place and with devastating effect as Ruenroeng decided to go through the gears and change the pace. As the Thai came in trying to land a combination, he was read by Casimero and a monsterous left counter hook sent him crashing to down. Ruenroeng was visibly hurt as he just managed to beat the count ,but the Filipino smelled blood and went in for the kill. Ruenroeing was trying to survive but as he held his hands high, Casimiro saw the body and zeroed in. After a combination to the head ,a savage left hook landed in the liver of Amnat and winched in pain as he sank to the floor for the full count of 10,losing his IBF title in the process.The new champion now has a record of 23-3.
On the undercard Chao Zhong Xiong had Jose Jimenez hurt in the first round but as time went on Xiong began to look clumsy. Jimenez managed to get home with a majority decision and is now the mandatory to the IBF minimumweight champion Jose Argumedo. Jimenez improves to 17-5-1, 7 KO’s ,Xiong drops to 26-7-1,14 KO’s. Scores were 116-111 Xiong ,114-113 twice for Jimenez.
Thai former world champion Tor Buamas was clearly outboxed and outthought by China’s Zong Ju Cai over 10 rounds in an IBF female Minimumweight title eliminator. Buamas has so much experience in the ring ,but seemed to be confused by Cai’s basic style and movement. Cai landed jabs and combinations to run out a near flawless winner with score of 100-90 and 99-91 twice. Now Cai is the manadory to japans etsuko Tada’s IBF title.
Chinese Olympian Fanlong Meng stayed unbeaten and twice floored Australian Rob Powdrill to earn a stoppage in the fourth round. Meng literally broke down the Australian hard man with the volume of clean shots he threw and was rescued in by the referee at 1:23 of the fourth. Meng is 7-0,5 KO’s and Powdrill is 6-3, 1KO.
Zi Jie Shang lost only his second fight when he fought former Super Bantamweight Wulan Tuolehazi .The fight was made at Lightweight and despite Shang being a natural lightweight, Tuolehazi gritted his teeth and toughed out a majority decision to even out his record which now stands at 1-1. scores were 57-57,59-55 twice.
KOKI INOUE AND SATOSHI HOSONO BACK IN ACTION IN KOREA
June 26th is the date where two of the Ohashi stable fighters will be in action . Hot prospect Koki Inoue will look to improve his three fight unbeaten streak where as rumour has it,may take on Korean Hyun Woo Yuh 5-1, 5KO’s.
Satoshi Hosono is the other fighter who ia said to be having a bout in a non-title affair . Hosono is the Japanese Featherweight champion there is no comment on who the opponent will be, but it can only be a good thing that Hosono stays busy.
SHIRO DEFENDS TITLE ON AUGUST 7TH
Light flyweight Japanese champion Ken Shiro will be defending his title against Toshimasa Ouchi ,who is a one time Japanese title challenger who fought Masayuki Kuroda to a draw for the title.Shiro is highly thought of with a record of 7-0, 4KO’s and is also highly ranked by the OPBF and infact this could be for the vacant title as Jonathan Taconing is bidding for a world title.
HIDENORI OTAKE BACK IN THE RING
Former world title challenger Hidenori otake will take on Hernan Cortez of Panama,who is a former WBC FECARBOX champion at Super Flyweight . This looks like an easy fight for Otake with Cortez losing three of his last six with one draw,nethertheless this looks to be a step up in class since losing a title fight to Scott Quigg 2 years ago.The fight will take place at the Korakuen hall in Tokyo.
TANAKA HALTS PATILANO
Kosei Tanaka had one eye on a title fight when he made easy work of IBF rated Filipino Rene Patilano as he dominated his way to count of 10 in the 6th round .This was Tanaka’s first fight since giving up his Minumumweight title to move up to 108lbs. Tanaka looked better not having to boil down to the sports lightest division and was sharp and powerful in dismantling Patilano.
This could be a step in a the right direction and seriously made a statement to Ryoichi Taguchi the WBA champion and will possibly get the fight after the performance he put on. Look for the fight to be made for late 2016.
Weekly Round Up of Asian Boxing
By: Ben Underwood
TACONING’S WORLD TITLE CALL
4 years is a long time to wait for a second title shot, but that is exactly how long Filipino Light Flyweight Jonathan Taconing had to wait for his shot. With a record of 22-2-1 (18 ko’s) Taconing is rumoured get his shot on June 11th against mexican champion Ganigan Lopez, although the bout is still awaiting official confirmation it is set to be officially announced withing the next few days.
It is said by sources that the bout will be staged in the arena coliseo in Mexico, so Taconing will be giving away home advantage to Lopez, but Jonathan is no stranger to these shores as last year he was seen beating Ramon Garcia Hirales in 10. This came after a failed but highly controversial title tilt against Thai champion Kompayak Porpramook for the WBC bauble. While Taconing appeared to be well in control a cut to Porpramook was deemed to be from a clash of heads and the Thai veteran was the winner by a shut out decision after 5 rounds.
Lopez is making his first defence of the WBC title that he won from Japanese Yu Kimura so impressively. Although Lopez is pushing 35, he is a former WBC silver champion at Minimumweight in which he won from Omar Soto and a multiple WBC latino champion at, Minimum, Light Flyweight and Flyweight.
The mexican is certainly no slouch and Taconing will have to be on his guard for however long the bout lasts. Lopez,a southpaw will also have to be alert as the Filipino has that aggressive,heavy handed style and with a point to prove.
AKAHO BACK WITH A WIN
After losing his WBO world title bid to champion Pungluang Sor Singyu last August, Ryo Akaho of Japan went over old ground in an entertaining battle with Toyoto Shiraishi . Both men were at a crossroads in their careers,which meant that they had everything to fight for.
The two fighters who fought each other for the OPBF Super Flyweight championship, which ended in a TKO victory for Akaho. Now both are fighting as Bantamweights and they didnt disappoint as the Japanese crowd was treated to this all or nothing encounter.Even though Shiraishi was delivery the better boxing and was marking up Akaho around the left eye, it was Ryo that was landing the heavier blows. Shiraishi started to slow by the fifth and Akaho’s big shots started to get through more frequently. In the sixth Toyoto was dumped on the canvas and was sytematically outworked in the last two rounds to go down a points loser to Ryo Akaho.
Akaho now 27-2-2 (18 KOs) can now look forward to bigger fights, perhaps another crack at a version of the world title. Shiraishi who falls to 26-10-3 (12 KO’s) showed he is game and can compete comfortably at OPBF level.
Scores were 77-76,78-74 and 79-72 which I think was an injustice to Toyoto Shiraishi.
FORMER JAPANESE MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPION HALTED
Rising talent Hironobu Matsunaga had his biggest test to date when he came up against former national champion Sanosuke Sasaki. Sasaki,who won the title by knocking out veteran Tadashi Yuba and then losing it 4 months later to Tomohiro Ebisu, had all he could handle with Matsunaga at the Korakuen Hall in Tokyo.
Sasaki came out trying to establish the jab in the first round ,which seemed to do the job and take the first round. Success was short lived as Matsunaga worked out a way around that jab and started to throw more combinations that seemed to unsettle Sasaki. Hironobu, confidence growing rapidly,was marking Sasaki with his meaty shots and by round four the inevitable knockdown came with a further point taken from Sanosuke for holding,making round four a 10-7 round.
Matsunaga sensed the end by round five and came out to draw the fight to the conclusion everybody was expecting and made the referee intervene and stop the bout.
Matsunaga was impressive and his record is now 10-1 (5 KO’s),while Sasaki loses his fourth fight on the spin with a record of 11-5 (5 KO’s).
KONO HAS BEEN ORDERED BY THE WBA
WBA Super Flyweight champion Kohei Kono has been given his orders to negotiate a fight with Luis Conception ,the Interim champion for the WBA. Conception made himself manatory by beating Hernan Marquez via unaminous decision and the two men have been given a 30 day free period to negotiate.
This unification match will see Kono fight two mandatory fighters in a row ,while Conception,an Interim champion at both Flyweight and Super Flyweight has his first attempt at a world title. There is no anouncement on where the fight will be and what date it will be staged on.
OPBF WELTERWEIGHT MATCH UP COMES TO JAPAN
Australian OPBF welterweight king Jack Brubaker will be making his second defense of his crown by fighting on away soil against (24-1,8 KO’s) Suyon Takayama. It will be Brubaker’s first time fighting away from his native country and is a step up in class for both boxers. The bout is said to be taken place at the Korakuen Hall in Tokyo with the date being confirmed as July 25th.
Brubaker ripped the crown from Xing Xin Yang in August last year with a knockout and has a 10-1-1,5 KO’s ledger.
Kubo Retains Title in Kobe
By: Ben Underwood
Unbeaten Super Bantamweight Shun Kubo defended his OPBF title successfully with a 12 round unaminous decision against Benjie Suganob. The tall southpaw used his jab effectively in the early stages of the battle keeping Filipino Suganob on the outside. Meanwhile Suganob was searching for a way in and got his chance in the 5th stanza as he upped the tempo as he made the champion look uneasy momentarily .Kubo of Japan, regained composure and started to land hard left hands that made suganob take notice, which kept him away for the next three rounds.
In round nine Benjie came on strong again , trying to claw back the scores from the tired Kubo, but it seemed to be too little too late for the game Suganob as he could not decrease Shun’s lead. In the end the judges were all in agreement and thought Shun Kubo was a deserved winner with scores of 117-113, 115-112, 115-113 to retain his title in which he won in december by Knocking out Lloyd Jardeliza of the philippines. Now Kubo excels with a new record of 10-0 7 KO’s and is WBC ranked 11th. Benjie Suganob adds another setback to his record and is now 10-5-1 with 5 KO’s.
Ryo Mutsumoto is expected by many boxing insiders to reach the dizzy heights of world championship level with an amateur record of 53-3 (39) at the time of turning professional. Matsumoto’s amateur career was not decorated with Olympic golds or world championship glory, but winning the Japanese High School tournament is an achievement, as it is regarded as being one of the toughest tournaments in the world of amateur boxing. There was one tournament where Ryo had to be pulled from as a result of an condition which sadly deemed him too ill to compete.
Matsumoto a tall, powerful boxer with an 83% knockout ratio ( 15 ko’s from 17 wins )as a professional comes from the highly respected Ohashi gym,training alongside excellent Japanese WBO Super Flyweight champion Naoya Inoue.Ohashi,himself is a 2-time world amateur champion and holds Ryo in high regards.
Winning his pro debut in just 94 seconds, he was off to a winning start. Matsumoto racked up six straight knockouts before going in with tough veteran Yoshinori Koto scoring an impressive 5 round stoppage victory. Three outings later and Matsumoto found himself winning an 8 round decision over 4-time world title challenger Hiroyuki Hisataka, a win that really made the Asian Boxing world take notice of him.Next came Thailand’s Rusalee Samor a world ranked and very dangerous opponent for the 12-0 prospect,but Ryo systematically outboxed and knocked Samor out in the 12th to take the OPBF Super Flyweight title from Rusalee, a former IBF Pan Pacific Flyweight champion.
Ryo’s 5ft 8 inch frame proved to big to boil down to Super flyweight, so he predictably moved up as far as super Bantamweight and in his last bout, which happened on may 8th saw him in a tough back and forth affair with mexican Victor Uriel Lopez ,with Matsumoto looking sluggish, Lopez won by fifth round stoppage.
News has come to light that Matsumoto is still in Hospital following the fight ,although this is not from the result of being stopped. This is from the condition that plagued him during his amateur days.
The nature of the illness has not been disclosed ,but Boxinginsider.com wish Ryo Matsumoto recovers quickly and that he can continue to fulfill his potential.