Japanese 17 year old Riku Kano (5-1-1, 3) created a little bit of history today as he became the first Japanese fighter to claim a WBA Asia title before making his domestic debut. The youngster, fighting in Thailand earlier this morning, over-came Indonesian journeyman Madit Sada (9-19-1, 3) with a 12 round shut out to win the WBA Asia title at Minimumweight.
The young fighter, who only turned 17 a few weeks ago, has been said to be eyeing up the Japanese record for youngest ever world champion, a record currently held by Hiroki Ioka. Whilst this was only a small step towards that record it should put him in good steed with the WBA who will likely give him a ranking if he can defend the belt a few times in the next year or two.
So far Kano has only fought in the Philippines, where he debuted, and in Thailand though from what we understand he will begin fighting in Japan next year, where the minimum age is 17. Prior to even reaching the Japanese minimum age Kano had already fought 6 times and was being touted as one of the sports most talented youngsters. On this performance the talent is certainly there though, Sada isn't the greatest of tests.
Having proven he can do 12 rounds it seems likely than Kano will continue with these longer fights to build up experience of them. He is however going to need to be handled carefully given his young age. Hopefully his team won't burn him out too young, a real risk when they have such a talent on their hands.
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