Earlier today Japanese fans at the Korakuen Hall had the chance to see Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Yusaku Kuga (15-2-1, 10) [久我 勇作] make his first defense of the title, as he over-came the challenge of Ryoichi Tamura (8-3-1, 5) [田村 亮一], in what was a compelling contest.
The early stages saw Tamura apply pressure on Kuga, but the champion managed to make the most of his speed to evade the pressure, and did just enough to take the first round, before landing a monster of a right hand in round 2, that Tamura took cleanly and stayed upright. Tamura seemed to be woken up by the shot and in round 3 he really got going, with 2 judges giving him the round.
Kuga battled back well in rounds 4 and 5 to strengthen his grip on the bout, but Tamura refused to go away, and continued to try to turn things around. This lead to some thrilling back and forth moments, though it seemed like the judges were always prefering Kuga's work, until round 8 when a clearly tired Kuga began to show his exhaustion. That really gave Tamura a big chance and in rounds 8 and 9 the challenger did all he could to try and stop the champion, who was running on empty.
Thankfully for Kuga he got a second wind in the final round, a thrilling round, and managed to see out the distance in a greulling contest.
With the bout going the distance the cards were read, with cards of 97-94, twice, for Kuga and a card of 96-94 to the champion, who took the unanimous decision and recorded his first defense.
The win for Kuga will serve as a great lesson, and exposed a number of flaws, notably his stamina, which he will have to work on going forward. As for Tamura he will almost certainly bounce back from this loss, and could well find himself in the title mix again in the near future.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Tomorrow Japanese fight fans at the Korakuen Hall will get the chance to see Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Yusaku Kuga (14-2-1, 10) [久我 勇作] defending his title against fellow puncher Ryoichi Tamura (8-2-1, 5) [田村 亮一] in a bout that really does seem to be a mouth watering clash between two crude, but exciting, punchers. Today those two men weighed in for their bout and both looked in great condition as they made weight for a potentially explosive encounter.
On the scales the champion, who looked in incredible shape, was bang on the divisional limit of 122lbs and he looked like a man who was determined to keep alive not just his reign as a world champion but also his stoppage run, which is currently at 3 wins including notable blow outs against Jonathan Baat and Yasutaka Ishimoto.
The challenger was slightly lighter, coming in around 121.75lbs, for the bout, and although he was in great shape he didn't look quite as ripped as the champion. Despite not being as proven he was confident and it seems clear that he's lookign to make this into a war, something we expect Kuga will want, as well as the fans.
Kuga and Tamura face off in potential fire fight for Japanese honours!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Back in May we learned that Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Yusaku Kuga (14-2-1, 10) [久我 勇作] would be making his first defense of the title on July 29th against the under-rated Ryoichi Tamura (8-2-1, 5) [田村 亮一], in what looks like a really good match up against two under-rated and really hungry young fighters looking to prove a point. Today it was revealed that that bout won't be the only title bout on the show.
The other title bout will see the really promising and fast rising Tsubasa Koura (10-0, 7) [小浦 翼] face off with Filipino foe Lito Dante (13-8-4, 7) for the OPBF Minimumweight title, which has been vacated by future world title challenger Hiroto Kyoguchi (7-0, 6) [京口 紘人].
For Koura the bout will be his first title bout, of any kind, as he looks to build on being the 2015 Minimumweight Rookie of the Year, and subsequent stoppage run which has included a 2nd round TKO over former world title challenger Jeffrey Galero. Although he's on a 4 fight stoppage run this is a step up in class in some ways with Dante being much better than his record suggests, and much tougher than fan may suspect. Given that Koura has fought just 31 rounds in his career, and just 10 rounds since the start of 2016, he'll likely be getting a genuine stamina test here.
Dante isn't the greatest fighter but he has never been stopped and has faced the likes of Siyabonga Siyo, Vic Saludar, Takumi Sakae, Jessie Espinas and Simphiwe Khonco. He is a handful at Oriental level and certainly won't be getting in the ring with Koura to fall over. In fact he'll travel seeing this bout as a chance to win the Oriental title and move towards a potential world title fight down the line.
The two bouts will be the headline bouts at Dangan 189 and will be shown on Boxingraise, giving subscribers another treat in what looks set to be a great month for Japanese fight fans.
Earlier this month we reported that a deal had been done for a third meeting between Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Yusaku Kuga (14-2-1, 10) [久我 勇作] and former champion Yasutaka Ishimoto (29-9, 8) [石本 康隆], with the bout pencilled in for July 18th.
It now seems however that that bout won't be taking place, with Kuga instead set to face off Ryoichi Tamura (8-2-1, 5) [田村 亮一], who is fighting in his first professional title fight, on July 29th.
The bout will be Kuga's first title defense and will see him hunting a 4th straight win as he moves towards a potential all-Japan world title fight down the line. Tamura will be looking to play a spoiler here, and looking to extend his current 4 fight KO run, but he is stepping up massively following bouts against good but not sensational domestic foes.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Yesterday we reported that Sanosuke Sasaki (11-4, 5) [佐々木左之介] was set to battle former Japanese Welterweight champion Nobuyuki Shindo (17-4-1, 6) [新藤 寛之] on November 14th at the Korakuen Hall. Now we have more details on that card, which was formerly announced as Dangan 171 earlier today.
One of the chief supporting bouts will feature Japanese ranked Ryoichi Tamura (7-2-1, 4) [田村 亮一] and 2015 Super Bantamweight Rookie of the Year Renji Ichimura (7-3, 6) [市村 蓮司]. The bout is really well matched on paper, with both men winning 7 of their 10 career bouts, but they have fought at different levels with Tamura being more proven, courtesy of bouts against the likes of Kenji Kubo, Hideo Sakamoto and Yuki Matsudo. Despite Tamura facing more notable names Ichimura has the edge in power and is the puncher coming in to this match up.
Another great supporting bout will see the unbeaten Daishi Nagata (7-0-1, 4) [永田 大士] face the struggling Quaye Peter (9-7-2, 5). Nagata enters the bout ranked in the top 5 by the JBC at 140lbs and has been impressive, at times, however he has been fortunate to remain unbeaten and Peter could be the one to end that unbeaten run. On the other hand Peter is a very inconsistent fighter and wins over Kazuya Maruki and Ryoji Tanaka have been joined by some disappointing defeats, at his best he could easily beat Nagata but that inconsistency has been a huge issue through his career.
In a really intriguing contest we'll see two JBC ranked Super Flyweight's facing off. This bout sees the wonderfully talented but light hitting Jo Tanooka (13-3-3, 1) [田之岡 条] takes on the "win-some lose-some" Ken Achiwa (11-11-4, 4) [阿知和 賢]. Tanooka is one of the best pure boxers in Japan, and scored his only stoppage win last time out, despite being talented he can be out fought and Achiwa will be trying to turn the bout into a fight. Although Achiwa's record is less than spectacular he has gone unbeaten in his last 5 bouts, including a draw with Tatsuya Takahashi and a win over Ganbare Shota.
Also on this card will be the fast rising Hiroto Kyoguchi (3-0, 3) [京口 紘人]. His opponent hasn't been confirmed but Dangan have reached out to Filipino fighters ranked by the OPBF in the hope of securing a solid opponent and helping Kyoguchi move towards a title fight in 2017, likely an OPBF title fight.
Former Japanese champions set to face off on November 15th!
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