The WBC Youth Light Flyweight title has a new champion!
Just moments ago in Osaka fans saw Japanese youngster Riku Kano (15-4-1, 8) [加納 陸] claim his latest professional title, stopping Indonesian journeyman Mektison Marganti (5-11-1, 3) in the 8th round of their bout.
The men, who were supposed to fight earlier this month, weren't ever likely to have a competitive bout. Kano, for all his faults, is a real talent, even if he doesn't appear to have the grit to compete at the higher level. Against a fighter that won't test his metal or make him question himself Kano will do as he wishes, and that was seen here.
Kano used his southpaw jab well, set the tempo behind it and used his foot work to avoid Marganti's shots. As the fight went on Kano began to show his variety and was up 40-36 when the cards were announced after 4 rounds.
With Kano well in the lead and his confidence building he began to incorporate more into his attacks, picking up the pace and firing off combinations. These combinations began to take a toll on the Indonesian who was clearly being broken down in rounds 6 and 7. The combinations kept coming in round 8, and this time they broke through with Marganti forced to take shots on the ropes. His corner would then decide enough was enough and threw in the towel to save their man from further punishment. The bout was stopped at 2 minutes 42 seconds into round 8.
This was only the third time Marganti had been stopped, and the first time in over 3 years. That's impressive given he has shared the ring with the likes of WBC Minimumweight champion Wanheng Menayothin and upcoming world title challenger Satanmuanglek CP Freshmart. For Kano he adds this belt to reigns as the WBA Asia and OPBF "interim" champion, both at Minimumweight, and ends a 3 fight losing run in title bouts, having lost to Katsunari Takayama, Jerry Tomogdan and Shin Ono. There is however a huge gulf between this win and bouts for bigger, more established titles, and this will be seen as little more than a building block as he looks to rebuild his career.
Tomorrow we'll see the rescheduled bout between Japanese youngster Riku Kano (14-4-1, 7) [加納 陸] and Indonesian journeyman Mektison Marganti (5-10-1, 3), who battle for the WBC Youth Light Flyweight title.
Today both men made the Light Flyweight limit with room to spare.
Kano, a former world title challenger, was 107.6lbs for the bout, comfortably under the 108lb limit. He looked in great shape for the bout and seemed very up for it.
Marganti made weight with even more ease than Kano, weighing in at 107lbs for the bout. He seemed to realise he was the under-dog, but did state that he would try his best to bring the belt back to Indonesia. If he does then that would be the biggest win of his career so far, by a long way.
For fans wanting to watch this bout, it will be made available on Boxing Raise in the coming days.
Related-Kano and Marganti battle for WBC Youth crown! (Preview)
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
This past weekend fight fans in Sanda, Hyogo, may have expected to see Riku Kano (14-4-1, 7) [加納 陸] battle against Indonesian journeyman Mektison Marganti (5-10-1, 3) in a WBC Youth Light Flyweight title clash, which was originally arranged as part of a triple header of youth title action. That bout was however rescheduled at late notice due to Kano suffering a minor injury.
Today we have been informed that the bout has now got a new date, and that date is May 26th, just 3 weeks after the original date. Not only has Kano had his return rescheduled, but it will be against his original foe as well.
The bout has now been added to the May 26th Mutoh promoted card at the Osaka City University, making that card a triple header.
As mentioned the card now features 3 title bouts, with the previously announced WBO Asia Pacific Flyweight title bout, between Masahiro Sakamoto (13-2, 9) [坂本真宏] and Yusuke Sakashita (17-8-3, 12) [阪下優友], and the WBO Asia Pacific Bantamweight title bout, between champion Ben Mananquil (17-1-3, 4) and Yuki Strong Kobayashi (14-8, 8) [小林佑樹]. This Youth title bout is scheduled on the show between those two regional title bouts.
Although Kano's addition to the upcoming show does add something to it, it is still a shame that he removed from the card this past weekend, where he would have added a lot more to a smaller show. We are however very glad that the youngster's injury wasn't too significant and that it's only set him back weeks, and not months.
Interestingly he would likely have had his bout added to the TV Osaka youtube channel had he fought this past weekend, inside we're now expecting his bout to be featured on Boxing Raise along with the rest of the card.
Back in August we saw the once touted Riku Kano (14-4-1, 7) [加納 陸] suffer a stoppage loss to Shin Ono [小野 心] in a Japanese Minimumweight title fight. The loss was a major set back for Kano, who looked to be beaten mentally, as much as physically, falling apart after a head clash. Today Kano returned to the ring for the first time since that loss, and took on domestic journeyman Takayuki Teraji (9-17-1, 4) [寺次孝有希].
Teraji, a usually safe opponent who puts up a good effort in losses, had scored just 3 wins in his last 11 bouts and seemed a straight forward opponent for Kano to rebuild his confidence against.
Knowing he was in easy the pressure was off Kano to look good good, or to even really be challenged. His only goal was to win, and that he did, by simply out boxing Teraji, using his southpaw jab and left uppercut well from the opening round. Teraji tried to up the pace in round 2, but Kano's edge in speed and skills saw him neutralise the change in tactics from his foe. In fact during round 2 Kano landed a hard right hook that seemed to shake Teraji up, though the veteran held on and weathered the storm.
In the second half of the fight Kano slowed, notably, but managed to just use his boxing know how the land the eye catching blows, and used Teraji's offense against him. It wasn't the most exciting way to conclude the bout, but it was a case of needing to get the win, rather than putting on a show for the fans.
After 8 rounds we went to the scorecards, which read 79-74, 79-73 and 80-74, all in favour of Kano.
Earlier today the Taiesei gym held a press conference to announce their next show, set for December 2nd in Hyogo.
The card will feature 3 notable bouts at the top of the card, with two of them being Japanese Youth title fights and one being the return of a recent Japanese title challenger.
That recent challenger is Riku Kano (13-4-1, 7) [加納 陸] who came up short in a recent Japanese Minimumweight title fight against Shin Ono (23-9-3, 6) [小野 心].
Kano will be up against Takayuki Teraji (9-16-1, 4) in what looks like a straight forward confidence building fight for the once touted youngster. Kano was harsh on himself for his performance against Ono and seems to be fully aware that his potential is on the verge of being wasted. He needs to get back into the swing of things and this bout is the start of a rebuilding process.
One of the youth title bouts is at Flyweight, as Arata Matsuoka (6-6, 4) [松岡新] faces off with Hikaru Ota (9-8, 5) [太田輝]. On paper this isn't a brilliant bout, but it clearly seems to be a contest to fill a void as Junto Nakatani has turned his eyes on to the more notable Japanese Flyweight title, rather than the Youth version who he now appears to have vacated. The 23 year old Ota is 3-5 in his last 8 and clearly is struggling for form, so a win here could be the bit shot in the arm his career needs. Matsuoka on the other hand has won 4 of his last 5, but was stopped last time out by veteran Shunji Nagata..
The other youth title bout will take place at At Featherweight, and looks to be a much better match despite having two men who are better known as Super Bantamweights. This fight will see Arata Matsuoka's twin brother Hikaru Matsuoka (14-4-3, 2) [松岡輝] battle against Noboru Osato (10-6-4, 2) [大里登]. On paper this is a pretty decent match up. Matsuoka has shown a weak chin, with 3 of his 4 losses coming by stoppage, but has a huge win over Richard Pumicpic on his record and has won 6 of his last 7. Osato on the other hand has a more spotty record but has competed at a decent level with bouts against Yuki Iriguchi and Takuya Mizuno in recent years.
It should be noted that if the Matsuoka brothers win they will be the first brothers, and the first twins, to be Japanese Youth Champions.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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