Earlier today the East Japanese Boxing Association announced their award winners for the month of September, with 3 awards being won.
The MVP for the month was the new Japanese Featherweight champion Ryo Sagawa (8-1, 4) [佐川遼], who defeated Reiya Abe (19-3-1, 9) [阿部 麗也] to claim the title. The new champion impressed in his win, and it's hard to really think that anyone else even came close to challenging Sagawa for the award.
The "Fighting Spirit" award was also won by a Japanese champion, with Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Yusaku Kuga (19-3-1, 12) [久我勇作] earning the award for his impressive blow out win over Yosuke Fujihara (18-7, 5) [藤原陽介]. This looked like an easy defense for Kuga, but turned out much easier than expected for the champion.
The newcomer award was won by excellent youngster Rikito Shiba (4-0, 2) [芝力人], for his win over Shisui Kawabata (2-1, 2) [川端嗣穂] to claim the Japanese youth Light Flyweight title. This was a great performance from Shiba, who will be fighting in a Japanese title eliminator in December, and we really do look forward to seeing where his career goes in the coming years.
The award ceremony for the 3 men will take place on October 26th at the Korakuen Hall, as part of a big show featuring a number of Japanese title eliminators.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Earlier today Japanese fight fans at the Korakuen Hall got a stacked card featuring some really interesting match ups.
One of those match ups pitted young and unbeaten fighters against each other with Rikito Shiba (4-0, 2) [芝力人] and Shisui Kawabata (2-1, 2) [川端嗣穂] facing off for the Japanese youth Light Flyweight title.
It wasn't a bout that was going to get a lot of international attention, but it certainly looked like an excellent match up between two brilliant young prospects, and it delivered!
Shiba got off to the perfect start, dropping Kawabata in the opening round with a counter shot. Kawabata wasn't badly hurt but the knockdown secured Shiba a 10-8 round, despite a great fight back from Kawabata.
Kawabata's fight back saw him take round 2, as he upped his work rate, but then he struggled to really build on that momentum with Shiba taking the play away in round 3 as he picked up his own pace and forced Kawabata on to the back foot. Rounds 4 and 5 were both close but Shiba's power began to shine in round 6, as he landed clean hurtful shots on Kawabata and built further on his lead in round 7. To his credit Kawabata came back hard in the 8th round, but it was too little too late to over-come Shiba and his lead, with all 3 judges scoring the bout 77-74 to Shiba.
Despite suffering a small nick over his left eye Shiba is pencilled in to return to the ring in December, in a Japanese Light Flyweight title eliminator, as he looks to move from the Youth title to the senior title. In his eliminator he will face off against Masamichi Yabuki (9-3, 9) [佐藤政道].
As for Kawabata his career is certainly not over with this loss, and the 23 year old is likely to get another shot at the belt in the near future. A loss of this kind, this early in his career, will certainly do more good than harm and Kawabata will have learned more from this loss than he would from a string of easy wins.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Tomorrow fans at Korakuen Hall will see a Japanese youth Light Flyweight title bout, with Rikito Shiba (3-0, 2) [芝力人] battling against Shisui Kawabata (2-0, 2) [川端嗣穂] in a mouth watering clash.
Today the two youngsters weighed in for the their bout, and both men made the 108lb limit with no issues.
On the scales Shiba was bang on the Light Flyweight limit, whilst the taller Kawabata was slightly lighter at 107.37lbs.
At the weight in Shiba seemed incredibly confident and had belief in his power. He has already got his next bout arranged, a Japanese title eliminator later in the year against Masamichi Yabuki (9-3, 9) [佐藤政道] and admitted that it would be embarrassing to lose tomorrow and still enter the eliminator for the senior Japanese title.
Kawabata on the other hand seemed comfortable with the weight loss and stated that Shiba was smaller than he'd expected. He revealed his game plan was to box, and be wary of Shiba's power.
Related - Shiba and Kawabata face off for Japanese youth title!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Yesterday we reported that an October 26th card at Korakuen Hall would be playing host to 5 Japanese eliminators as we begin to piece together the 2020 Champion Carnival bouts. Now we've been given a full list of all the eliminators, as we really see the end of the year Japanese boxing calendar take shape.
The first of the bouts will take place on September 13th at Super Bantamweight, and will see former champion Ryoichi Tamura (12-4-1, 6) [田村 亮一] take on experienced veteran Gakuya Furuhashi (25-8-1, 14) [古橋大輔], in what should be a thriller.
The second of the eliminators will take place just a few days later, on September 21st and is another bout that was already known about. This one is the Japanese Minimumweight title eliminator between unbeaten teenager Kai Ishizawa (6-0, 6) [石澤開] and former world title challenger Masataka Taniguchi (11-3, 7) [谷口 将隆].
Following the Minimumweight bout we'll have to wait until October for many of the bouts, with the first of those coming on October 21st and seeing Cristiano Aoqui (14-7-2, 10) [アオキ クリスチャーノ] and Daishi Nagata (13-2-1, 5) [永田大士] clash in an eliminator at 140lbs. On paper this one has explosive action written all over it and could turn out to be the hidden gem of the eliminators.
We then move on to the October 26th card, which features 5 different eliminators. They are the Flyweight eliminator, between Ryota Yamauchi (5-1, 4) [山内涼太] and Seiya Fujikita (13-4, 6) [藤北誠也], the Bantamweight eliminator between Kazuki Tanaka (11-2, 8) [田中一樹] and Kyosuke Sawada (13-2-1, 6) [澤田京介] the Featherweight eliminator, pitting Hinata Maruta (9-1-1, 7) [丸田陽七太] against Takenori Ohashi (17-5-2, 11) [大橋健典], the Lightweight eliminator between Kazuki Saito (7-1, 5) [斎藤一貴] and Izuki Tomioka (6-2-1, 2) [富岡樹] and the Welterweight bout between Keita Obara (21-4-1, 19) [小原 佳太] and Toshiro Tarumi (12-3-3, 6) [垂水稔朗]. This is where the bulk of the bouts are, and is expected to be a sensational card.
The Super Featherweight bout will take place on October 30th and is one of the best match ups. The bout will see former Japanese Featherweight champion Taiki Minamoto (16-5-1, 13) [源大輝] take on Takuya Watanabe (36-9-1, 21) [渡邉卓也]. This pits a huge puncher against a proper tough guy in what could be a very brutal bout.
At Light Middleweight we'll see former champion Nobuyuki Shindo (20-5-2, 8) [新藤寛之] take on Yuto Shimizu (13-4-2, 5) [清水優人] in what looks like a disappointing match up on paper but should prove to be very entertaining. This bout will take place on November 2nd and is expected to be featured on a card that has at least one other noteworthy bout.
The final bout to be scheduled is the Light Flyweight contest, which is set to feature Rikito Shiba (3-0, 2) [芝力人] taking on the big punching Masamichi Yabuki (9-3, 9) [佐藤政道], in another amazing match up. This bout, set to take place in Nagoya on December 15th, is a huge step up for Shiba and a win here would be a huge statement for the youngster.
One bout that has been ordered, but has no set date yet, is the Super Flyweight bout, which will feature former champion Hiroyuki Kudaka (26-18-2, 11) [久高寛之] and Yuta Matsuo (15-4-1, 8) [松尾雄太], in what should be an action packed war, helped by the limitations of the two men involved.
Notably there will be no eliminator at Middleweight and instead Riku Kunimoto (4-0, 2) [国本陸] will get a shot at the belt, likely against current champion Kazuto Takesako (11-0-1, 11) [竹迫司登], in the new year.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
We've known for a little over a month that former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (25-2-1, 13) [伊藤 雅雪] would be returning to the ring on September 13th. Sadly what we didn't know was who he would be fighting.
Today we finally saw his opponent for the being announced, and unfortunately it's not someone worth getting excited about.
The bout, which is a home coming for Ito following his title loss to Jamel Herring, will see the Japanese fighter take on Indonesian foe Ruben Manakane (25-18-1, 14).
The 26 year old Manakane turned professional in 2011 and has been a regional journeyman, padding his record in Indonesia and losing on the road to the likes of Billy Dib, Luke Jackson, Marlon Tapales and AJ Banal. It's almost a given he will pick up another loss here to the world class Ito.
Whilst the main event is disappointing the rest of the card is worth getting excited about, with a great Japanese Featherweight title bout between Reiya Abe (19-2-1, 9) [阿部 麗也] and Ryo Sagawa (7-1, 4) [佐川遼], a Japanese Super Bantamweight title eliminator between Ryoichi Tamura (12-4-1, 6) [田村 亮一] and Gakuya Furuhashi (25-8-1, 14) [古橋大輔] and a Japanese youth Light Flyweight title bout, as Rikito Shiba (3-0, 2) [芝力人] faces Shisui Kawabata (2-0, 2) [川端嗣穂].
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