Sometimes fights exceed expectations, sometimes however they fail to reach the heights of excitement we had anticipated. One bout that failed to really deliver took place at the Korakuen Hall earlier today and saw world ranked Japanese Featherweight Reiya Abe (19-2, 9) [阿部 麗也] essentially go through the motions against former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-1, 3) [杉田大祐].
On paper this looked interesting. Abe had been in amazing form recently, reeling of notable wins on the domestic scene and earning a Japanese title fight, which he will get on May 1st against Taiki Minamoto. Sugita on the other hand had been a fantastic amateur, and is a full time police office who is fighting because of his love of boxing. Despite being a police office, Sugita was regarded as a real hopeful, and knew a win today would move him towards his own potential Japanese title fight.
It had the ingredients to be good. Sadly however it had a major issue. There was a huge gulf in class. From the opening round it was clear that Abe wasn't going to let Sugita have things his own way. He used his reach, movement and southpaw stance to make Sugita fall short, over-commit and generally look like a novice. It wasn't pretty or exciting, but it was what Abe had been doing to much more accomplished professionals before Sugita. Whilst making Sugita miss Abe would land the occasional stinging left hand, busting the nose of his opponent.
The nose would bleed for much of the bout and Sugita's issues weren't helped by the fact that Abe seemed so much quicker, sharper, smart and stronger. He was able to push Sugita around when he wanted, and able to just out think and out move him.
In round 5 the bout was essentially sealed for Abe who twice dropped Sugita. Sugita looked like he was being given a lesson in boxing by Abe who seemed happy to carry Sugita at times. Rounds 6 and 7 both saw Abe take things relatively easily on his man, as he looked to prove who the better boxer was. His mentality did however change in round 8, when he finally chose to prove who the better fighter was, and looked to stop Sugita, who was badly hurt in the final seconds of the bout.
Having managed to survive 8 rounds it was clear Sugita hadn't done enough to win, and all 3 judges had Abe winning wide, with scores of 79-71, 80-70, 80-70.
Next up for Abe is that aforementioned bout with Minamoto. Today's bout shouldn't see any delay for that contest as he looked almost untouched at the end of the bout. For Sugita the question of what's next is going to be an interesting one. He's tough, and can make for good fights, but a loss like this can cripple a mans confidence. He was being being played with at times.
Abe is fringe world class, at worst, and the performance today seemed to be him at about 50%, he really is a fantastic fighter, even if he's not putting on exciting performance, he is putting on clinics and we'd not be surprised if he embarrasses Minamoto later this year.
Tomorrow at the Korakuen Hall, and live on G+, we'll see future Japanese Featherweight title challenger Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也], who is scheduled to fight for the title on May 1st, take on boxing policemen, and former amateur stand out, Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐].
Today the two men took part in the weigh in for their bout, and both men made weight, for the contest which has an agreed limit of 57.8KG, or close to 127.5lbs, well above the Featherweight divisional limit.
On the scales Abe was 127.2lbs. He looked in good shape and looked significantly bigger than Sugita. This is, for all intents, his division and he really has been low key ripping up the domestic scene with a string of good wins against the likes of Hikaru Marugame, Satoshi Hosono and Tsuyoshi Tameda. He sounded confident at today's weigh in and hinted that Japanese Featherweight champion Taiki Watanabe will be watching the bout, potentially scouting his next challenger. Incidentally Watanabe and Sugita are stablemate mates, and it's assume that the champion will be cheering on his gym mate.
As for Sugita he was bang on the agreed limit of 127.5lbs. He looked in tremendous shape and admitted that he didn't expect to be fighting in such a big bout after just 9 months of his professional career. He did have over 140 amateurs but this is still a tougher opponent than anyone would have anticipated for him. He appears to see himself as the under-dog here but it was clear that he felt like he was a very hungry under-dog for what will, by some margin, be the biggest fight of his career, so far.
Related - World ranked Abe takes on Policeman Sugita!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
We've known for a while that the first live televised Japanese show of 2019 will be the January Dynamic Glove card, which will be shown on G+ on January 19th. We now have all the details of the broadcast.
The broadcast for the show will begin at 17:45 local time and is set to run until 22:00, with a tape delay reshowing the following Thursday, starting at 22:30 and eating at 1:30 on Friday morning.
For those unaware, the show will be headlined by world ranked Super Bantamweight Shingo Wake (25-5-2, 17) [和氣 慎吾] rematching Takafumi Nakajima (29-11-1, 13) [中嶋 孝文], the last Japanese fighter to beat Wake. A win for Wake is expected, as he continues his charge for a second world title fight.
In supporting bouts we'll see Ikuro Sadatsune (9-2-3, 3) [定常育郎] and Kenshin Oshima (4-1-1, 3) [大嶋剣心] battle in a brilliantly matched 8 round bout at Bantamweight whilst future Japanese Featherweight title challenger Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也] will be up against former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐].
Although it's the first Japanese card to be televised in 2019, it is worth noting that the January 12th show is expected to be shown live on Boxingraise, though this is yet to be confirmed with only days to go until the show.
Over the last few days we've seen details emerge, almost being drip fed in fact, for the January 19th "Dynamic Glove" show.
First we were informed that world ranked Super Bantamweight Shingo Wake (25-5-2, 17) [和氣 慎吾] would be facing Takafumi Nakajima (29-11-1, 13) [中嶋 孝文], in an attempt to avenge a loss from years ago. Then we were informed of a mouth watering clash between Ikuro Sadatsune (9-2-3, 3) [定常育郎] and Kenshin Oshima (4-1-1, 3) [大嶋剣心], who will face off in a brilliantly matched 8 round bout at Bantamweight.
Today we saw another fantastic bout being confirmed for the card, with Japanese #1 ranked Featherweight contender Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也] battling former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐].
The bout is scheduled to be a 8 round bout at a contracted 57.8KG, around 127.4lbs, and should be a really special bout, with Abe taking on his most skilled opponent so far, and Sugita taking on his most accomplished foe by far.
From what we understand Abe's Japanese Featherweight title fight, during the Champion Carnival, will not be at risk if he losses, unless he suffers an injury which may rule him out. Regardless, it's a very risky fight for him to be taking so close to such a significant contest.
Over the last week or saw we've seen a rumour of Vic Saludar (18-3, 10) defending the WBO Minimumweight title against Masataka Taniguchi (10-2, 7) [谷口 将隆] on New Year's Eve in Macau. It now seems like there's another twist in that story, with Japanese sources now reporting that Taniguchi will actually be fighting on November in 13th in Thailand. Not only that but he will be up against an unbeaten man in a bout for the WBO Asia Pacific Minimumweight title, almost certainly ruling him out of a December world title fight.
The Watanabe gym fight will be battling against 23 year old Filipino Joel Lino (10-0-1, 3) in Bangkok, on the same card as the previous reported ABF Featherweight title bout between Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐] and Worawatchai Boonjan (12-17-1, 11).
Coming in to the bout Lino will have a #5 ranking whilst Taniguchi will be ranked #6 by the WBO Asia Pacific, whilst the title is currently vacant.
Whilst this is expected to end speculation on a possibly Taniguchi world title bout in December it should be noted that if he can win, and win quickly, he would find himself in the world rankings and it would opening up the Saludar fight for him. It would however be a very quick turn around to prepare for Saludar on a few weeks later. Likewise a win for Lino would push him up the world rankings towards a possible world title shot of his own.
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