Over the past few weeks we have been lead to believe that former 2-weight world champion Akira Yaegashi (21-5, 11) would be facing Heri Purnomo (2-5, 1) on the upcoming Pheonix Battle card on August 20th. It now seems, however, that Yaegashi will be facing someone other than Purnomo.
From what we understand Purnomo has been replace by compatriot Iwan Key (9-12-3, 1), a 32 year old who has been a professional since 2002 and has significantly more experience than Purnomo.
Although Key isn't a top class fighter he has mixed in good company having been in with the likes of Pornsawan Porpramook, Rodel Mayol, Nobuo Nashiro and Tabtimdaeng Na Rachawat. Sadly though he has lost everyone of those notable bouts.
At the moment we're unsure why Key has replaced Purnomo, and we've also not had any confirmation of this replacement, but the source reporting it is usually several days ahead of the loop and we suspect the announcement will be made in the coming days.
As far as we're concerned the two most interesting bouts on the card, the Japanese Featherweight title fight between Satoshi Hosono and Tatsuya Otsubo, and the bout between world title contenders Ryo Matsumoto and Luis May, will be going ahead as previously announced.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
A new month of boxing kicks off this coming Saturday and the first televised card comes from South Korea where fans will be able to get "world title action" courtesy of local hero, and current WIBA and IFBA champion, Ji Hyun Park (21-2, 6). Park will be defending her titles against Filipino fighter Gretchen Abaniel (15-7, 6).
Whilst the bout is relatively obscure for non-Korean fans it will actually be aired in Korea on specialist sports channel SBS Sports.
The broadcast is set to begin at 2PM local time on Saturday and is set to last two hours with Hyun's bout being the main event. From what we understand one of the other bouts will feature Thai based Iranian Mohamadreza Hamze (6-5-1, 2) fighting a local Korean.
Whilst fight fans outside of South Korea will struggle to see this one live we do expect to see fight footage hit the internet within a few days. For fans in Korea this should be a great test for their local fighter who, despite her record, is genuinely not that impressive. Abaniel, whilst no world beater herself, should really make this more than interesting.
Note-Fans who use BETV to watch Korean and Japanese TV SBS Sports should be accessible via the channel listed as CCTV12.
(Image courtesy of http://www.kbaboxing.co.kr)
On Saturday night in Mexico fans will get the chance to see the little known Kazuki Hashimoto (11-4, 7) go for the biggest win of his career as he takes on former 3-weight world champion Jhonny Gonzalez (57-9, 48). The bout, widely considered a mismatch, sees Gonzalez beginning his pursuit of a Super Featherweight title and a potential show down with Takashi Miura.
On Friday the two men too part in their weigh in and both, thankfully, made the limit for the bout.
On the scales Hashimoto was 58.8KG's, around 129½lbs. That was the heaviest of his career, around 1½lbs heavier than he was in his last 3 bouts, which all ended with Hashimoto scoring quick victories.
Gonzalez on the other hand was bang on the limit, at 130lbs, or just shy of 59KG's. This was also his highest weight so far and sees him hitting the scales 3lbs heavier than his previous highest, which came against Jose Francisco Mendoza back in 2009. Notably it's 4lbs heavier than he was last time out, when he was stopped in 4 rounds by Gary Russell Jr in a very one sided bout that saw Gonzalez lose the WBC Featherweight title.
(Image courtesy of Alma Montiel)
This coming Sunday we see the start of a 4 man WBC tournament at 154lbs. For us the man of note involved in that competition is Filipino veteran Dennis Laurente (49-5, 30), who begins his tournament with a really tough bout against the heavy handed John Jackson (19-2, 15). The bout is a huge ask for the 38 year old, who enters the bout as the OPBF Light Middleweight champion, but it's got the potential to lead him to a huge financial reward if he was to win and over-come the once touted Jackson.
Sadly for Laurente he is, of course, a big betting under-dog and the British bookies have priced him at 13/2 to over-come the much younger and more explosive Jackson. As for Jackson he is best priced at an almost unbackable 1/11 to win the bout. For those interested in a draw that's widely available at 25/1.
It's worth noting that, at the time of writing, only the "To win" market is available. It's worth noting that were a "method of victory" market available there may actually have been some interesting odds with Laurente having never been stopped in his 44 fight career, though Jackson is a huge puncher and almost had Andy Lee out of there just a couple of fights back.
We've known for a while that Japanese fighter Kazuto Ioka (17-1, 10) was going to defend his WBA Flyweight title in September. Yesterday the WBA all but confirmed that a deal was in place for Ioka to defend against Argentinian Roberto Domingo Sosa (26-2-1, 14), though at the time we were still thinking that the bout was being arranged for September 20th.
Today however we have been very reliably informed that the date we had been told is wrong and that Ioka will actually return to the ring a week late on September 27th, with Sosa set as the opponent.
The information was released by someone related to a fighter on the card, who revealed that their fighter would be on the under-card of Ioka's next world title defense, whilst also stating their fighter would be in action n September 27th, essentially revealing the date of the Ioka bout prior to the official announcement, which set to come any day now.
If Ioka wins then he'll be instantly penciled in for a December 31st bout with another Argentinian fighter, Juan Carlos Reveco (35-2, 19). That will be a rematch of their contest from earlier this year which saw Ioka claim the title from Reveco in what was a really competitive and good fight. Reveco has agreed to allow Ioka an interim fight prior to that rematch, which will be this Sosa fight.
Whilst an official announcement from the Ioka hasn't yet been made it does seem very clear that the bout between Ioka and Sosa is now signed, sealed and sorted for the final Sunday of September.
At the moment full details regarding the card are, as you'd expect, scarce though from what we understand the card will feature Riku Kano (6-1-1, 4) and Ryo Miyazaki (23-1-3, 14) and will be aired on TBS in Japan.
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