Earlier today WBA "regular" Bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue (17-0, 15) [井上 尚弥] took part in a 4 round spar in front of the media.
The spar saw Inoue share the ring with former world title challenger Genesis Servania (32-2, 15), as he continues to prepare for his May clash with IBF Bantamweight champion Emmanuel Rodriguez (19-0, 12).
The spar saw Inoue looking super sharp with his jab being particularly crisp, and landing to both head and body of Servania.
Although Servania has often been a sparring partner for Inoue, especially in the last couple of years, he was seemingly playing the role of a "virtual" Rodriguez today, and Inoue stated, “The hairstyle and height are similar to Rodrigues, so it is easy to imagine. I want to confirm what I want to do.” It appears that Servania had a haircut in an attempt to look more like Rodriguez and to imitate him, without Inoue or his team even needing to ask the Japanese based Filipino.
Inoue, who turns 26 years old tomorrow, was wearing new sparring gear, bought for him by promoter Hideyuki Ohashi as a birthday present. The new gear is said to be very similar to what he's planning to wear against Rodriguez in Glasgow.
Inoue's sparring will continue with Servania over the coming days, whilst other Filipino and top amateurs will join in as Inoue continues to sharpen his tools ahead of the Rodriguez clash, in what will be a WBSS semi final.
(Image courtesy off Nikkan Sports)
On Sunday night in Fresno fans were able to witness several upsets, one of which saw former world title challenger Genesis Servania (32-2, 15) suffer a surprise loss to the little known Carlos Castro (22-0, 9) in a contest for the WBC Continental America's Super Bantamweight title.
The bout pitted two of Top Rank's fighters against each other with both knowing a win would open big doors to a potential world title fight later in the year. Going in Servania was the betting favourite, he had impressed on his US debut, losing a competitive fight with Oscar Valdez, and reeled off 3 KO wins since then, including one against fellow world title challenger Carlos Carlson. Castro however refused to play the role of under-dog loser, and made it clear from the off that he wasn't there to play second fiddle to the Filipino.
From the opening moments Castro looked sharp, quick and like a man with the perfect gameplan. He was using his speed to get in and out, firing off and getting away before Servania could respond. Castro's unwillingness to hold his feet made Servania look silly at times, and inactive at others as the unbeaten man racked up the early rounds by fighting smartly.
Servania would look to cut the distance, but struggle to land more than an occasional shot in the early rounds. Those occasional blows became rarer in the later rounds as his legs lost their snap, and even though Castro's output didn't increase late on he was still out working Servania.
After 10 rounds there was no questions as to who won, with Castro taking the decision 100-90, 99-91 and 98-92.
Later today once beaten Filipino fighter Genesis Servania (32-1, 15) will be facing off with the unbeaten foe Carlos Castro (21-0, 9) in a bout for the WBC Continental America's Super Bantamweight title.
Yesterday the two men took part in their weigh in and both fighters came in under the 122lb limit.
On the scales Servania, who is best known for his world title fight against Oscar Valdez, was 121.6lbs whilst Castro was 121lbs.
Servania is known to be chasing a second world title fight, and a win here would open the door to a potential second crack at world level. A win for Castro however would seriously put him on the boxing map and be, by far, the biggest win of his career.
(Photos by Mikey Williams/Top Rank).
Japanese based Filipino fighter Genesis Servania (32-1, 15) was supposed to return to the ring on January 12th in Tuscon Arizona. Originally the plan was for him to face Mexican Luis May (21-11-1, 8), as part of the under-card for Oscar Valdez's (24-0, 19) WBO Featherweight title defence against Andoni Gago (20-3-3, 6), before that show was pulled apart and cancelled.
Now Servania has a new date, venue and opponent set for his return.
The talented Filipino will be back in action on February 10th, at the Save Mart Arena in Fresno, California to take on the unbeaten American Carlos Castro (21-0, 9) in what is a much, much better bout than the proposed one with May.
The contest will take place on the under-card of Jose Carlos Ramirez's WBC Light Welterweight title defense against Jose Zepeda, and with Ramirez headlining the card the venue should be guaranteed to be packed with the champion being a huge local draw in California.
Servania, who famously dropped Oscar Valdez in a 2017 fight for the WBO Featherweight title, didn't have a great 2018, fighting just twice, but did keep his name out there with a win against Carlos Carlson on US soil. This will be his third US bout and we suspect the aim is to build him towards a second world title fight later in 2019.
Castro on the other hand is taking a major step up in class and his best wins to date have been against the likes of Juan Palacios and Jorge Diaz. He'll know a win here would push him towards a potential world title fight of his own, though will likely be aware that he's a major under-dog here.
According to realfight.ph we'll be seeing Japanese based Filipino fighter Genesis Servania (32-1, 15) return to the ring on January 12th in Tuscon Arizona to battle Mexican Luis May (21-11-1, 8), as part of the under-card for Oscar Valdez's (24-0, 19) bout with Andoni Gago (20-3-3, 6), in what is expected to be a WBO Featherweight world title defense for Valdez.
The talented Servania was in the ring in September, stopping former world title challenger Carlos Carlson in 3 rounds. That bout saw Servania scoring a third straight stoppage win since losing a competitive decision to the aforementioned Valdez in September 2017. Sadly whilst he is on a nice run of stoppage the opposition has left much to be desired, and that's a pattern that looks to be continuing here with a bout against May.
May was once world ranked, but the 34 year old Mexican is without a win of more in more than 4 years, whilst losing to the likes of Shun Kubo and Ryo Matsumoto, and has gone 4-4-1 since beating Daniel Noriega back in August 2014.
May will be expected to be the next victim of Servania, who will be looking to stay busy whilst edging his way towards a second world title fight, and potential rematch with Valdez. The Filipino really caught the eye when battling Valdez on his US debut, but has sadly not really built on that performance, and it's a shame given that he is such an excellent fighter who deserves bigger fights than ones like this.
The original realfigh.ph article can be read here.
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