The early morning papers in Japan have reported some happy news for the Tatsuyoshi family, with Juiki Tatsuyoshi (6-0, 4) [辰吉寿] reportedly expecting his first child in the summer!
The fighter got married at the end of 2016 after having lived together for a few months. They were married early during the pregnancy but kept it quiet until this weekend when the story began to hit the Japanese press. The press has reported that it will be a daughter and that both Juiki and his wife are seemingly very happy and so to is the soon to be grandfather Joichiro Tatsuyoshi [辰吉丈一郎], himself a boxing icon in Japan.
As for fighter Tatsuyoshi did have plans for a bout early in the year and although he had to cancel a bout in February, due to an injury. It now seems like things are healed and although we've not yet had much news of Juiki's ring return, we do know that he will be in an 8 rounder in the summer, with the timing of the bout likely to be around the same time as the birth of his daughter.
Interestingly Juiki admitted that his injury, suffered earlier this year, lead him to tears due to the disappointment. Those were tears he shed in front of his wife and it seems like he has felt much happier having the support of his wife there. It seems like that support has helped Tatsuyoshi with his recovery and it seems like he has been working incredibly hard to get back to full fitness as soon as he can.
In March we reported that Korean fighter Sa Myung Noh (10-3, 3) [노사명] was set to challenge OPBF Featherweight champion Ryo Takenaka (16-3-1, 9) [竹中 良] on June 8th at the Korakuen Hall. Today we saw confirmation that that bout was indeed set to take place, along with a Japanese title bout on a Misako promoted double header at the Korakuen Hall. And better yet the card will be featured on Fuji TV as part of their Diamond Glove series of shows.
For Noh the bout will see him stepping up massively in class, though he does hold wins over Teiru Atsumi, Jaymart Toyco and Bong Joon Suk, whilst also winning the KBF Featherweight title whilst Takenaka will be hunting a 4th defense of the title, and will be looking to move towards a world title fight in the near future following a number of strong performances recently.
Along with the previously mentioned OPBF title fight the show will also feature Japanese Light Welterweight champion Koichi Aso (21-7-1, 14) [麻生興] making his first defense of the title, as he takes on Yusuke Konno (11-3, 5) [今野裕介], who will be getting his first shot at a title.
Aso won the title earlier this year, as part of the Champion's Carnival, in what was his 3rd title shot. Aso won the title by stopping Kazuki Matsuyama in the 8th round of their bout back in February, having previously come up short agaonst Hiroki Okada twice. As for Konno the bout is a huge leap up in class, though he has won his last 3 since a March 2015 loss to Hisao Narita.
The show hasn't yet been officially announced by Misako, but we're expecting at least one other bout of note to be added to the card when the officially announcement is made, however the sorces in Japan have confirmed the show is going ahead as a title double header.
Earlier today we wee informed that Japanese ranked 140lb prospect Koki Inoue (7-0, 6) [浩樹井上] would be returning to the ring on an Ohashi promoted card on June 25th.
At the moment the full details of the card are unknown though we have been informed that the show has been dubbed "The Boxing Show" and will take place in Tokyo, at the Machida City General Stadium. Sadly other details, including Inoue's opponent, haven't yet been announced. In fact the only concrete details seem to be that Inoue will be fighting in a 10 round bout, for the first time in his career.
Although the details are scarce it would make sense for Ohashi to either get Inoue a title fight, or a title level opponent to prepare him for a title contest. His last few bouts have been notable steps up and his team shouldn't be wanting to let his momentumn slow down due to a poor opponent choice.
What we do know is that the show is likely to feature other Ohashi Gym fighters making appearances, albeit in none fighting roles, and that the card will feature several other fighters of note in bouts, though they haven't yet been confirmed.
We're hoping for more set in stone details regarding the show shortly, though it does seem clear from the first poster that Inoue will be the star attraction and will be headlining the card, something that suggests he and his team feel he's ready for the big time.
In 2014 Japanese fight fans saw the professional debut of Genki Hanai (7-2, 5) [華井 玄樹], a former amateur stand out tipped to go places, and be a potential star for Gifu. Sadly that potential appears to have not transferred over to professional success, and that was seen again today as he was upset by Kenta Matsui (8-6, 1) [松井 謙太].
Last November Hanai suffered a stoppage loss to Tatsuya Fukuhara. At the time that was a disappointing setback, but not something that spelled the end for the hopeful. Today however something else, as he suffered a split decision loss to Matsui.
From the opening moments it was clear that Matsui hasn't come to make up the numbers, and instead came to fight. That aggression put Hanai under pressure dropped the touted man in round 3, with the bell saving him. In the rounds that followed Hanai always did enough to be competitive but never managed to really force his will on the hungry Matsui, who made it clear that he wanted to score a career best win.
In the end the judges were split, but with score cards of of 77-74 in his favour, twice, Matsui managed to do enough to earn a split decision, with the one judge favouring Hanai 77-75.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Tomorrow Japanese fight fans at the Korakuen Hall, as well as those who use the Asign service, will get the chance to watch a fantastic looking Japanese Middleweight title bout as Hikaru Nishida (15-8-1, 7) [西田 光] defends his "regular" title against "interim" champion Tomohiro Ebisu (17-4, 17) [胡 朋宏].
Today the two men took part in their weigh in and both made weight for the bout.
On the scales Nishida, the shorter man, was 159.6lbs, and looked in great shape. Although in fantastic condition this will be his first bout in around 11 months, and his first since suffering an out of the ring injury, that forced him to pull out of a September bout against Makoto Fuchigami. Despite that lay off he sounded confident and like a man determined to come out on top.
Ebisu was the slightly heavier man coming in at around the divisional limit, and looked in great shape himself, whilst also boasting a couple of inches height advantage over Nishida. Like Nishida he was confident and sounded like he had scouited Nishida and his style well, coming with a well prepared game plan.
Hikaru Nishida and Tomohiro Ebisu battle to unify the Middleweight crown!
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!