The once beaten Takayama will be fighting for the first time since vacating the Japanese title, which he defended 6 times in the space of 3 years. He'll be looking to claim the title and record his 12th straight win.
For de la Cruz this is a huge opportunity and one that comes following a 2 fight winning streak, though those wins did come after an 0-11-1 run. The Filipino, who has regularly been fighting in Australia, is a well travelled fighter having fought in Thailand, China, South Africa, his native Philippines and Japan, where he is 0-2 following losses to Yoshihiro Kamegai and Takashi Inagaki.
The bout does look like a mismatch but De la Cruz will see the big opportunity as a bout that could really boost his career.
In addition this card will also feature a very tasty under-card bout between Yuichiro Kasuya (8-0, 1) [粕谷 雄一郎] and Kazuma Sanpei (12-2, 4) [三瓶 数馬], both of whom have won Rookie of the Year.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)