Earlier today fans were able to see the popular Takuya Kogawa (30-5-1, 13) [粉川拓也] claim his 30th professional win, as he over-came Hideyuki Watanabe (8-12-3, 6) [渡邉秀行].
Despite the win it wasn't a day to remember for Kogawa, in fact it was a day with a lot of luck and he was incredibly fortunate to avoid a shock loss here.
Kogawa looked sharp early on, and not like a man who had been out of the ring since last July. Sadly that sharpness didn't last and Watanabe was the aggressor, landing southpaw left hands on a regular basis and making Kogawa look horribly limited at times. Kogawa was often on the back foot, trying to avoid the pressure of Watanabe and often came off looking second best.
After 6 rounds it was really hard to make a case for Kogawa, who hadn't been totally out classed but had been getting out landed, out worked and out boxed at times. Thankfully for Kogawa his experience showed through in the end as he gritted his teeth, fought hard and managed to win the last 2 rounds. They proved incredibly vital, with Kogawa needing them to pull out the win.
After 8 rounds the scores were 77-75 and 77-76 to Kogawa and 77-76 to Watanabe. The final 2 rounds were the difference between a win and a huge upset loss for Kogawa, who didn't shine on his debut as a Kadoebi fighter.
For Watanabe the loss will be a hard one to take, he did more than anyone would have have expected and fingers crossed he bounces back from this defeat, a defeat that obviously hurt given how he had performed. For Kogawa the future doesn't look good, and it's hard to know what he still has left in the tank after a very, very hard and long career. He's a long way removed from the fighter he once way, and looks a shadow of the fighter he was just a few years ago. Inactivity won't have helped Kogawa here, but he's an old fighter who has taken a lot of punishment and maybe, just maybe, that has all caught up with him.
For fans wanting to watch this bout, it's available on Boxing Raise.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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