Yamauchi had made his debut in June, stopping a Thai opponent in 2 rounds. Altough he looked genuinely talented on debut this still looked like a leap of faith against a man who had claimed the GAB Light Flyweight title in May and had run Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr razor close last year. Today however the 22 year old Japanese prospect looked a little bit special.
Yamauchi looked to scout Abutan in the opening round and made the most of his edge in skills and speed. Abutan didn't look outclassed during the round, but it was clear he was having to do a lot more than Yamauchi, who landed some really beautiful body shots. In the second round Yamauchi upped the pace and made Abutan pay for some wild swings. The Filipino did occassionally get through but took some heavy blows and suffered a knockdown late in the round.
Yamauchi went from strength to strength and really tested Abutan's resolve in round 3 before eventually stopping the Filipino in round 4, after the referee was forced to save the Filipino, who had been down for only moments earlier before a follow up attack by Yamauchi really came against a man who had nothing left to offer.
It would be easy to go over the top and praise Yamauchi to the moon here, and for a man in his second bout this was a truly sensational performance, but it was one that also showed a few issues that he needs to work on. Mainly his defense, which was at times a tad open and will need to be tightened up in the future, his combinations looked fluid but sometimes he over-committed to them and will need to perhaps tame his natural aggression going forward. For a man fighting for just the second time as a professional however this was a fantastic performance really marks the youngster as one to watch and another man on the fast track to the top.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)