On June 1st Japanese boxing gets a chance to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the influential Tsuneo Horiguchi.
Although relatively unknown outside of Japan Horiguchi, also known as "Piston", was one of Japanese boxing's first stars and one of the very, very few Japanese fighters to have had more than 100 career bouts.
Horiguchi began his professional career on March 3rd 1933 and finished it on April 22nd 1950. In that time he amassed an astonishing record of 142-26-15 (87) and was well loved by Japanese fans due to his style, which as his nickname may suggest was piston like. Once Horiguchi got going there was little stop his relentless attack which saw his shots pumping out from both arms. It wasn't the prettiest to watch but it was great fun to see him going to work like a whirring dervish.
Sadly "Piston" Horiguchi, the most popular Imperial Japanese boxer, died in 1950 when he was hit by a train. By then his best years in boxing were behind him though he was still only 36 could still have had a long life ahead of him.
Although not technically Piston's birthday on June 1st it will be a day used to remember him with a show held at the City Sogo Gym by the promotional company set up by Piston's relatives in his honour, Piston Horiguchi Promotions.
We won't pretend that the show is a great one though we have been informed that it will have some great fighters on it as Ohashi gym trio Naoya Inoue, Ayaka Miyao and Akira Yaegashi will all appear in exhibitions on the card giving fans another reason to turn up at the show and remember "Piston Horiguchi", one of the most popular fighters in Japanese history.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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