Earlier today the A-Sign boxing twitter account revealed that their May 10th card had now secured it's main event.
The bout that will headline that card will see OPBF Bantamweight champion Keita Kurihara (13-5, 11) [栗原 慶太] defending his title against former world title challenger Warlito Parrenas (26-9-1, 23), what should be an explosive encounter.
The champion will be defending the belt he won on December 24th, in what was a bout marred by officiating errors, for the first time and looking to maintain his current winning run, which stands at 4 fights. As for the challenger, who is best known for losing to Naoya Inoue, he'll be looking to end a 2-fight losing run and get his career back on track.
It should be noted that Parrenas had previously announced his retirement but it seems this opportunity was good enough to end that retirement, and as fans of the sport, we do like the look of this one, a lot.
Tomorrow fight fans around the world, as well as those at the Korakuen Hall, will be able to see a potentially brilliant fight, as OPBF champion Super Featherweight champion Hironori Mishiro (6-0-1, 2) [三代大訓] defends his belt against Takuya Watanabe (35-8-1, 20) [渡邉卓也], in the main event of Dangan 221.
The bout, which will be streamed on Boxing Raise, will be Mishiro's second defense, and Watanabe's first bout in Japan since December 2016.
Today the two fighters took part in their weigh in, and both men made weight.
The more experienced Watanabe was bang on the limit, and looked in great condition, as he always does. Mishiro, who also looked tremendous, was a touch lighter than the challenger.
At the weigh in both spoke confidently and it seems like they are just as excited for the bout as we are. The styles and mentalities of the two should make for some excellent action and we may be in for a bit of a hidden gem here.
Related - Mishiro and Watanabe to battle for OPBF crown!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Yesterday in Metro Manila fight fans were treat to a brilliantly tactical, competitive and compelling match up, as local star Juan Miguel Elorde (28-1, 15) retained his WBO Asia Pacific title, despite an excellent effort from Japanese challenger Shohei Kawashima (17-3-2, 4) [川島翔平].
For the first round to the last both men showed excellent technical skills, judging distance brilliant and picking the right shots. Despite the bout being a technical chess match, it wasn't one where both constantly waited for the other, and instead both men legitimately pressed the action, in a calculated and intelligent manner.
Through the first 6 rounds or so there was little to separate the men, despite some cheerleading for Elorde from the commentary team, though in the second half Kawashima seemed to pull his nose in front. The action was never one sided, though there was clear rounds each way, and it seemed like the visitor was the one taking the rounds by slim margins, always an issue on the road. The commentary and Elorde himself seemed to realise what was happening in the final rounds, with the commentary, which had been very confident early on, sounding apprehensive whilst Elorde tried to make sure that he gave the judges a reason to score the final round his way.
In the end we had it incredibly close, at 116-112 to Kawashima, but could easily see a wide range of scores, especially given how Elorde was the local favourite and the grandson of Flash Elorde, who's the reason for the Elorde Awards that this bout took place on. Elorde was also the promoters fighter and the man on the verge of a career defining world title fight.
The officials saw it differently to us, scoring it 117-111, twice, and 115-113 all in favour of Elorde. Although the 117-111 cards were very harsh, a win for Elorde was certainly not out of the question and the 115-113 card certainly was well within the realms of reality.
Earlier this month world ranked Light Flyweight Tetsuya Hisada (33-9-2, 19) [久田 哲也] announced that he would be taking part in a public exhibition with Reiya Konishi (17-1, 7) [小西伶弥] on April 20th as part of the next Fight Beat Boxing show. That has now been cancelled, likely due to Konishi having reportedly secured himself a world title fight.
Instead of having an exhibition Hisada has now announced that he will be in a live fight on the card, taking on Stevanus Nana Bau (9-10-2, 2) in what looks to be a stay busy fight.
Hisada had made it known that he was eyeing a world title fight for the summer, and this looks to be little more than a tick over contest for him, rather than staying out of the ring any longer than he needs to. But is also kills any chance of him getting a shot in May.
The bout has been put together on relatively short notice, suggesting plans have changed in the last few days, but it's a disappointing change given that Hisada has been linked to a world title fight all year. In many ways his failure to secure a big shot could be down to the fact his promoter simply doesn't have the financial backing to secure the big bout, especially not at home.
We've known for a while that the April 14th card in Kumamoto, headlined by Musashi Mori (8-0, 5) [森 武蔵] defending his WBO Asia Pacific Featherweight title against Richard Pumicpic (21-9-2, 6), would feature a host of exciting prospects. Those prospects now appear to have had their opponents named.
One of our most reliable and trusted sources have reported the opponents for Ginjiro Shigeoka (2-0, 2) [重岡銀次朗], Seiya Tsutsumi (4-0, 3) [堤聖也] and Sora Takeda (4-1,1) [竹田宙].
Shigeoka, who is regarded by many hardcore followers of the Japanese scene as one of the best prospects in the country, is listed as being up against Filipino Joel Lino (10-1-1, 3), in what is a brilliant match up.
Shigeoka, who turned professional last year, has looked sensational so far, but this is a worthwhile step up and sees him up against a man who took Masataka Taniguchi 12 rounds last year in a WBO Asia Pacific title bout. This is a real test, and a really tough bout for Shigeoka, who may be able to open eyes in a big way if he forces another stoppage. For Lino this is a chance to make his mark, but it is a very tough match up against one of the best young fighters on the planet.
Tsutsumi is listed as being up against experienced Filipino tough guy Ryan Rey Ponteras (22-13-3, 11), who has never been stopped in his 38 fight career. Given Tsutsumi's aggressive style and Ponteras's toughness this could be an amazingly exciting bout. Ponteras is no world beater, but is much better than his record suggest, whilst Tsutsumi has been out of the ring for a while, due to an injury that saw him cancel a bout in December.
As for Takeda his bout will see him going up against Thai Sanchai Yotboon (4-2, 4), who was stopped in September by a then debuting Shigeoka. The talented Takeda won the 2018 Rookie of the Year at Minimumweight and he should be far too skilled for the Thai visitor here.
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