Tomorrow fight fans Qinzhou Sports Center Gymnasium will be able to see a pretty notable card, featuring two title bouts.
One of those is a WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental Heavyweight title bout, pitting China's Zhiyu Wu (8-2-1, 2) against Japan's Kotatsu Takehara (15-11-3, 8).
The fighters involved in that bout took part in their weigh in for the contest, and both men came in at a near identical weight.
The 35 year old Chinese fighter, who is 5'11" and has faced the likes of Ian Lewison and Razvan Cojanu, came in at 242lbs and looked rather tubby. Takehara on the other hand, who is 40 years old and stands at 6'1", was only a smidge heavier at 242½lbs.
Both men know there is the potential to claim a top 40 WBC ranking with a win here and although neither man is close to a world title fight, it was still be a huge achievement for fighters at this level to claim a regional title. It's a bout that means a lot to both men, and from what we under-stand Takehara is not wanting to leave it up to the judges, as a result it could be a rather fun yet limited Heavyweight contest.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Former WBO Minimumweight champion Merlito Sabillo (27-5-1, 13) has fallen hard in recent years, dropping from an unbeaten world champion with a 23-0 (12) record. It now seems like he really is fighting for his career at the age of 34
The Filipino may well be about to enter the last chance Saloon, with the recent announcement that he will be back in the ring on September 15th in Qinzhou, China. The forrmer champion will be facing off with Chinese local Jing Xiang (14-4-2, 3) in a bout for the WBC Silver Light Flyweight title.
The winner will shoot up the WBC rankings at 108lbs, and possibly find themselves on the verge of a shot at WBC champion Ken Shiro. For the loser however it would be a major set back. A loss for Sabillo would be his 6th in 10 bouts bout whilst a defeat for Xiang would would end a promising 6 fight winning run.
A second title bout on this same card see former Japanese Heavyweight title contender Kotatsu Takehara (15-11-3, 8) [竹原 虎辰] battle against Chinese foe Zhiyu Wu (8-2-1, 2) in a bout for the WBC Asian Boxing Council Heavyweight title. Given that the fighters are 40 and 35 respectively we don't see this being the start of some great charge up the rankings, but both men will be looking at this as a chance to get a notable regional title at the tail end of their career.
Earlier today Japanese fight fans in Aichi had the chance to see former Japanese Heavyweight title contender Kotatsu Takehara (15-11-3, 8) [竹原 虎辰] battle against Indonesian foe Satria Antasena (6-10, 2), and come out with a quick win.
The 39 year old dropped the Indonesian with a left early on and despite the visitor getting up he was down again soon afterwards. This time the Indonesian failed to beat the 10 count and was counted out after just over 2 minutes of the first round.
Although his 40th birthday is just around the corner, and he has been suffering with a recurring knee injury, Takehara seemed happy with his performance and was seemingly glad to have gotten through a training camp with no issues.
It's unclear if Takehara will continue to fight on, or whether he will retire on this win, but his team did seem like they would like to get him another title fight down the line. However his camp also stated that if the veteran wanted to retire they wouldn't stand in his way and would respect his wishes either way.
As for Satria Antasena this is a 4th straight stoppage loss and and he is now without a win in over 4 years. He is now 0-3 in Japan and one must question why he continues to fight. He isn't a natural Heavyweight, and really needs to drop down several divisions if he's intending to have any success in his career.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
This past Sunday was a huge day in Japanese boxing with a number of shows across the country. The day saw two world champions retain their title in Tokyo, where much of the focus was, but did also see several notable results outside of the capital.
One of the most notable of those saw Japanese veteran Daiki Koide (22-8-2, 9) [小出 大貴] suffer an unexpected loss in Aichi to Korean visitor Woo Min Won (8-1, 5), who scored a 3rd round TKO win.
Won, making his international debut, was expected to come up short here, with more than 60% of those polled on Japanese site Boxmob picking Koide, but instead shocked the local with a stoppage win.
Koide wasn't the only local to come up short with Kazuya Maruki (19-4, 12) [丸木 和也] suffering a very unexpected loss to Chan Hee Park (5-6-1), via an 8th round decision. The bout was competitive at times but the Korean did more than enough to deserve the decision with scores of 79-74, 78-75 and 77-75.
A third result of note on this card saw former Japanese Heavyweight title challenger Kotatsu Takehara (13-11-3, 6) [竹原 虎辰] score a 4th round TKO win over the previously unbeaten Ryu Ueda (5-1, 2) [上田 龍].
Earlier this year the JBC introduced new rules domestically. One of those was a change on the age restrictions that forced fighters into retirement at the age of 37, unless they met other criteria. One fighter who had been forced into retirement was former Heavyweight title challenger Kotatsu Takehara (12-11-3, 6) [竹原虎辰].
Today it has been announced that Takehara is looking to make a return to the ring following the change in rules and would be setting his sights on getting a third Japanese Heavyweight title fight.
At the moment there Japanese Heavyweight division is all but dead but the return of Takehara could help reinvigorate the division and could give a target for fighters like Ryu Ueda (5-0, 2) [リュ上田] and Rio Hidaka (12-2, 10) [樋高リオ], neither of whom are ranked by the JBC but could make for good fights with Takehara.
(Image courtesy of daily.co.jp)
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