We are sad to report the death of former OPBF Super Bantamweight champion Akio Maki at the age of 78.
Maki was a technical fighter who made his name in the amateur ranks where he was a very accomplished fighter. In the amateurs he claimed a gold medal at the 1958 Asian Games before later winning a Silver medal at the Diamond Belt Tournament in Mexico.
Following his amateur success, which we believe consisted of 82 fights with just 10 losses, Maki turned professional.
Maki made his professional debut in 1959 and quickly ran up a 7-0-1 record, including a notable victory over the then unbeaten Taizo Kakizawa and a draw with the future OPBF champion and world title challenger Mitsunori Seki.
Although he started well Maki's unbeaten run would come to an end in July 1961 as he battled the great Fighting Harada and was stopped in 8 rounds. A rematch with Harada saw Maki suffer his second defeat before a pair of draws saw his record fall to 7-2-3
In 1963 Maki scored the standout victory of his career as he out pointed Haruo Sakamoto and claimed the OPBF Super Bantamweight title. Sadly that victory would be his last as he lost back-to-back fights to end his career. Those losses include a decision loss to Thai novice Plainoi Rorfortor that saw Maki losing his title.
Maki retired in 1964 following the loss to Plainoi, his career record that stood at either 10-5-3 or 10-6-3 (depending on the source).
Following his retirement Maki set up a gym and did some TV work as a commentator. Although not the greatest professional he was a highly technical fighter and used that knowledge to his advantage in both his work with the TV companies and the gym.
From what we under-stand he tripped at home on April 14th and suffered a stroke over the past day or two, he passed away on April 26th. His memorial will be held on April 29th.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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