Sometimes fights exceed expectations, sometimes however they fail to reach the heights of excitement we had anticipated. One bout that failed to really deliver took place at the Korakuen Hall earlier today and saw world ranked Japanese Featherweight Reiya Abe (19-2, 9) [阿部 麗也] essentially go through the motions against former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-1, 3) [杉田大祐].
On paper this looked interesting. Abe had been in amazing form recently, reeling of notable wins on the domestic scene and earning a Japanese title fight, which he will get on May 1st against Taiki Minamoto. Sugita on the other hand had been a fantastic amateur, and is a full time police office who is fighting because of his love of boxing. Despite being a police office, Sugita was regarded as a real hopeful, and knew a win today would move him towards his own potential Japanese title fight.
It had the ingredients to be good. Sadly however it had a major issue. There was a huge gulf in class. From the opening round it was clear that Abe wasn't going to let Sugita have things his own way. He used his reach, movement and southpaw stance to make Sugita fall short, over-commit and generally look like a novice. It wasn't pretty or exciting, but it was what Abe had been doing to much more accomplished professionals before Sugita. Whilst making Sugita miss Abe would land the occasional stinging left hand, busting the nose of his opponent.
The nose would bleed for much of the bout and Sugita's issues weren't helped by the fact that Abe seemed so much quicker, sharper, smart and stronger. He was able to push Sugita around when he wanted, and able to just out think and out move him.
In round 5 the bout was essentially sealed for Abe who twice dropped Sugita. Sugita looked like he was being given a lesson in boxing by Abe who seemed happy to carry Sugita at times. Rounds 6 and 7 both saw Abe take things relatively easily on his man, as he looked to prove who the better boxer was. His mentality did however change in round 8, when he finally chose to prove who the better fighter was, and looked to stop Sugita, who was badly hurt in the final seconds of the bout.
Having managed to survive 8 rounds it was clear Sugita hadn't done enough to win, and all 3 judges had Abe winning wide, with scores of 79-71, 80-70, 80-70.
Next up for Abe is that aforementioned bout with Minamoto. Today's bout shouldn't see any delay for that contest as he looked almost untouched at the end of the bout. For Sugita the question of what's next is going to be an interesting one. He's tough, and can make for good fights, but a loss like this can cripple a mans confidence. He was being being played with at times.
Abe is fringe world class, at worst, and the performance today seemed to be him at about 50%, he really is a fantastic fighter, even if he's not putting on exciting performance, he is putting on clinics and we'd not be surprised if he embarrasses Minamoto later this year.
Tomorrow at the Korakuen Hall, and live on G+, we'll see future Japanese Featherweight title challenger Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也], who is scheduled to fight for the title on May 1st, take on boxing policemen, and former amateur stand out, Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐].
Today the two men took part in the weigh in for their bout, and both men made weight, for the contest which has an agreed limit of 57.8KG, or close to 127.5lbs, well above the Featherweight divisional limit.
On the scales Abe was 127.2lbs. He looked in good shape and looked significantly bigger than Sugita. This is, for all intents, his division and he really has been low key ripping up the domestic scene with a string of good wins against the likes of Hikaru Marugame, Satoshi Hosono and Tsuyoshi Tameda. He sounded confident at today's weigh in and hinted that Japanese Featherweight champion Taiki Watanabe will be watching the bout, potentially scouting his next challenger. Incidentally Watanabe and Sugita are stablemate mates, and it's assume that the champion will be cheering on his gym mate.
As for Sugita he was bang on the agreed limit of 127.5lbs. He looked in tremendous shape and admitted that he didn't expect to be fighting in such a big bout after just 9 months of his professional career. He did have over 140 amateurs but this is still a tougher opponent than anyone would have anticipated for him. He appears to see himself as the under-dog here but it was clear that he felt like he was a very hungry under-dog for what will, by some margin, be the biggest fight of his career, so far.
Related - World ranked Abe takes on Policeman Sugita!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
We've known for a while that the first live televised Japanese show of 2019 will be the January Dynamic Glove card, which will be shown on G+ on January 19th. We now have all the details of the broadcast.
The broadcast for the show will begin at 17:45 local time and is set to run until 22:00, with a tape delay reshowing the following Thursday, starting at 22:30 and eating at 1:30 on Friday morning.
For those unaware, the show will be headlined by world ranked Super Bantamweight Shingo Wake (25-5-2, 17) [和氣 慎吾] rematching Takafumi Nakajima (29-11-1, 13) [中嶋 孝文], the last Japanese fighter to beat Wake. A win for Wake is expected, as he continues his charge for a second world title fight.
In supporting bouts we'll see Ikuro Sadatsune (9-2-3, 3) [定常育郎] and Kenshin Oshima (4-1-1, 3) [大嶋剣心] battle in a brilliantly matched 8 round bout at Bantamweight whilst future Japanese Featherweight title challenger Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也] will be up against former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐].
Although it's the first Japanese card to be televised in 2019, it is worth noting that the January 12th show is expected to be shown live on Boxingraise, though this is yet to be confirmed with only days to go until the show.
Earlier today at the Tokyo Dome Hotel the media were able to attend the press conference to announce the 2019 Champion Carnival bouts, with 13 contests being officially announced.
As previously reported the Minimumweight bout will see defending champion Shin Ono (23-9-3, 6) [小野 心] defending his title against Norihito Tanaka (17-7, 9) [田中教仁] on January 12th at the Korakuen Hall.
The Light Flyweight bout, to fill the recent vacancy left by Tetsuya Hisada (33-9-2, 19) [久田 哲也], will see Kenichi Horikawa (38-15-1, 12) [堀川 謙一] battle against Satoru Todaka (9-2-4, 3) [戸髙達], with this bout set to take place on February 14th, also at the Korakuen Hall.
The Flyweight bout, like the Minimumweight bout, had already been announced and will see Junto Nakatani (17-0, 12) [中谷 潤人] and Naoki Mochizuki (15-3, 8) [望月直樹] fight on February 2nd at the Korakuen Hall. This bout is to fill the vacancy left by Masayuki Kuroda (30-7-3, 16) [黒田 雅之], who like Hisada has stated he intends to fight for a world title in 2019.
The Super Flyweight champion Takayuki Okumoto (21-8-4, 10) [奥本 貴之] will defend his title on April 21st in Osaka, and will see Okumoto battle against Yuta Matsuo (15-3-1, 8) [松尾雄太], in what will be Okumoto's second defense of the title.
The Bantamweight bout will be a unification bout as regular champion Yuta Saito (11-9-3, 8) [齊藤裕太], who has been suffering from illness recently, battling against recently crowned interim champion Hayato Kimura (28-10, 19) [木村隼人]. There is no set date on this bout, but it's expected to take place in Tokyo, with the Korakuen Hall the most likely venue.
The Super Bantamweight title will have it's vacancy filled on January 12th, on the same show as the Ono Vs Tanaka card. Fighting for the title will be Mugicha Nakagawa (24-5-1, 14) [武田勇太] and Ryoichi Tamura (11-3-1, 6) [田村 亮一], who will be looking to follow in the footsteps of former champion Shingo Wake (25-5-2, 17) [和氣 慎吾] who looks to be heading towards a world title fight, like Hisada and Kuroda.
Arguably the best match up for the Champion Carnival is the Featherweight bout, which will pit Taiki Minamoto (16-5, 13) [源大輝] against Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也], who will be battling former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐] in January before facing Minamoto on May 1st at the Korakuen Hall. This is, to us, the stand out bout of the Champion Carnival and is genuinely a mouth watering clash.
The Japanese Super Featherweight champion Masaru Sueyoshi (18-1-1, 11) [末吉 大] will take on Ken Osato (15-2-1, 4) [大里拳], in a rematch of the bout the two men had during the 2018 Champion Carnival. This contest will take place on May 4th at the Korakuen Hall and will see Osato looking to avenge his loss and Sueyoshi looking to repeat his win over Osato.
The unbeaten Shuichiro Yoshino (9-0, 7) [吉野 修一郎] will be making his 4th defense of the Japanese Lightweight title, as he takes on the challenge of Accel Sumiyoshi (11-4-3, 3) [アクセル住吉]. This bout is set to take place on April 11th at the Korakuen Hall.
Another bout that really whets the appetite is the Japanese Light Welterweight title bout. That contest will see champion Valentine Hosokawa (24-6-3, 11) [細川バレンタイン] defending his belt on April 6th at the Korakuen Hall against Koki Inoue (12-0, 10) [浩樹井上] in a mouth watering step up for the challenger.
We'll see attention turn to Osaka for the Welterweight title bout, as Ryota Yada (18-4, 15) [矢田良太] defends his belt against Yuki Nagano (15-2, 11) [永野祐樹]. This bout is set to take place on April 21st, though the specific venue wasn't announced.
The Light Middleweight title bout will see Nobuyuki Shindo (20-4-2, 8) [新藤寛之] defending the title against Hironobu Matsunaga (14-1, 8) [松永 宏信] in what should be a thrilling contest between a very hungry challenger and an under-rated champion. These two will clash at the Korakuen Hall on May 1st, as a double header with the Minamoto Vs Abe bout.
On March 2nd we'll see Japanese Middleweight champion Kazuto Takesako (10-0, 10) [竹迫司登] defending his belt against Shuji Kato (10-1-1, 6) [加藤収二], in what will be Takesako's second defense. This will also be at the Korakuen Hall.
At the moment the full details of who will be showing what bouts is unclear, but we're glad to now have most of the matches set, with dates and venues.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Over the last few days we've seen details emerge, almost being drip fed in fact, for the January 19th "Dynamic Glove" show.
First we were informed that world ranked Super Bantamweight Shingo Wake (25-5-2, 17) [和氣 慎吾] would be facing Takafumi Nakajima (29-11-1, 13) [中嶋 孝文], in an attempt to avenge a loss from years ago. Then we were informed of a mouth watering clash between Ikuro Sadatsune (9-2-3, 3) [定常育郎] and Kenshin Oshima (4-1-1, 3) [大嶋剣心], who will face off in a brilliantly matched 8 round bout at Bantamweight.
Today we saw another fantastic bout being confirmed for the card, with Japanese #1 ranked Featherweight contender Reiya Abe (18-2, 9) [阿部 麗也] battling former amateur stand out Daisuke Sugita (4-0, 3) [杉田大祐].
The bout is scheduled to be a 8 round bout at a contracted 57.8KG, around 127.4lbs, and should be a really special bout, with Abe taking on his most skilled opponent so far, and Sugita taking on his most accomplished foe by far.
From what we understand Abe's Japanese Featherweight title fight, during the Champion Carnival, will not be at risk if he losses, unless he suffers an injury which may rule him out. Regardless, it's a very risky fight for him to be taking so close to such a significant contest.
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