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)
The Strongest Korakuen tournaments might have ended a few years ago but the Champion Carnival has continued on, with the Japanese national champions defending their belts in mandatory title fights in the first half of the year. At the moment we're not totally sure who will be defending, or challenging, for titles in early 2020 though that will change in the coming months, especially October.
Today we were given the details of a monstrously significant show on October 26th featuring 5 Japanese title eliminators, with the winners all set to become the mandatory challengers for next year's Champion Carnival. What's even better than having 5 eliminators is the quality of those bouts and the fighters involved, with some barn burners set for the card.
In a Flyweight bout we'll see Ryota Yamauchi (5-1, 4) [山内涼太] look to build on his recent win over world ranked Filipino Alphoe Dagayloan as he takes on Seiya Fujikita (13-4, 6) [藤北誠也]. This should see Yamauchi enter as the clear favourite, but Fujikita is no push over and his 2018 war with Naoki Mochizuki showed just how tough he was, despite the close loss. This should be all action, given the styles of the two men, though obviously we do favour Yamauchi to get the win.
In the Bantamweight eliminator we'll see the hard hitting Kazuki Tanaka (11-2, 8) [田中一樹] take on the highly skilled Kyosuke Sawada (13-2-1, 6) [澤田京介], who is riding a 14 fight unbeaten run following back to back losses to begin his career. This is a real 50-50 bout and a hard one to call, and should be one of the most interesting bouts on the card. The winner is likely to face Yusuke Suzuki in the new year, in what should be a tremendous bout it's self.
At Featherweight we'll see touted youngster Hinata Maruta (9-1-1, 7) [丸田陽七太] take on former champion Takenori Ohashi (17-5-2, 11) [大橋健典]. Maruta has yet to live up to his promise, but has shown touches of brilliance and a win here will be a huge chance for him to show what he can do on the big stage. On the other hand Ohashi, despite being technically limited, is a huge puncher and his KO win in May over Shun Wakabayashi is still one of the best KO's this year. The winner of this will likely face either Reiya Abe (19-2-1, 9) [阿部 麗也] or Ryo Sagawa (7-1, 4) [佐川遼], who fight for the vacant title in September.
The Lightweight division will see Kazuki Saito (7-1, 5) [斎藤一貴] battle against Izuki Tomioka (6-2-1, 2) [富岡樹]. Of the two men Saito has proven to be the more aggressive, hard hitter and and crisper looking professional, however Tomioka is an awkward fighter, and he gave Masayoshi Nakatani real fits in an OPBF bout back in 2018. Saito should have the edge, but has shown real issues with his chin, whilst Tomioka is solid, but lacks power. Sadly the winner of this is likely to face the excellent Shuichiro Yoshino, in what would be a huge ask the for the challenger, who ever that ends up being.
The highest weight being fought at on this show is Welterweight, which will see Keita Obara (21-4-1, 19) [小原 佳太] battle Toshiro Tarumi (12-3-3, 6) [垂水稔朗]. Coming in to this Obara is, clearly, the bigger name, and is the most well known fighter on the show. Despite that he is now heading towards his 33rd birthday and has taken punishment through his career. Tarumi on the other hand is a relative unknown outside of Japan, but is riding a 7 fight winning streak since a 2016 loss to Yuki Nagano, who has since gone on to win the Japanese title.
At the moment the broadcast details of this show are unclear, though the hope is that Boxing Raise will carry it, like they did with a similar show in 2018.
Earlier today at the Japanese "Holy Land" of the Korakuen Hall fans got a real thriller between Japanese ranked fighters Naoki Mochizuki (15-3, 8) [望月直樹] and Seiya Fujikita (12-4, 5) [藤北誠也].
The bout started brilliantly for Fujikita, who scored a knockdown in round 1 with a huge right hand up top. He really couldn't have landed the shot any better. Amazingly Mochizuki bounced back up and started to get on the front foot.
Over the following 7 rounds we got great back and forth between the two men. Of the two Fujikita seemed to be the more straight forward and predictable fighter, though often seemed to be the one forcing the tempo, with Mochizuki looking to respond with the smarter, sharper punches. The two really let their shots fly, with punches being thrown almost entirely at the head of the opponent in a battle of toughness and wills.
At the end of 8 rounds there was very little to pick between the two men, who both wore the scars of battle on their face. The judges struggled to split the fighters, but seemed to just favour Mochizuki's cleaner punching, with judges scoring it to him 77-75 and 76-75, whilst the dissenting judge had it 76-75 to Fujikita. None of those cards were bad, with all 3 in the right area of a real 50-50 fight that saw both men take a lot of clean head shots.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today Japanese fight fans at the Korakuen Hall saw the latest Dangan card, and it was a notable one packed full of interesting fighters.
One of the most notable was the talented but light hitting Joe Tanooka (14-3-4, 1) [田之岡条] claimed a technical decision over veteran Hajime Nagai (14-9-2, 4) [長井 一]. The bout was an interesting and exciting contest, with some good back and forth action, but a headclash caused Nagai damage to his nose and eye, which forced the bout to be halted in round 6, with Tanooka taking the decision 58-57, 58-57 and 58-56.
Japanese #2 ranked Flyweight Seiya Fujikita (11-3, 4) [藤北 誠也] took a step closer towards a Japanese title fight as he over-came limited Thai Atiwit Munyapho (0-4) in 3 rounds. Atiwit was dropped several times by Fujikita before being stopped.
Former world title challenger Shin Ono (20-8-3, 4) [小野 心] also scored a stoppage against a limited Thai, as he took out Chanai Jaikrajang (0-3) in the 4th round of their scheduled 6 rounder!
One other fighter of note picking up a stoppage was the highly touted Tsubasa Koura (10-0, 7) [小浦 翼], who stopped the very limited Thongchai Chaiyonggym (0-6) in 2 rounds, to extend his unbeaten run and move a step towards getting his first title bout.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today Japanese fans at the Korakuen Hall got a real treat as former OPBF and JBC Lightweight champion Yoshitaka Kato (29-7-2, 9) [加藤 善孝] fought to an action packed draw with world ranked Australian Brandon Ogilvie (16-1-1, 8).
The bout was a great one on paper and proved to be just as good in the ring with both men letting their hands go at close rnage and both really showing a willingness to fight up close. The timing and counters of Kato were some of the more eye catching shots however Ogilvie wasn't to be out worked and really let his hands go with a highly aggressive style.
Ogilvie was badly damaged from a head clash in the middle rounds and later ended the fight with a damaged arm, though refused to back down and continued to the bell.
The bout was a great treat for fans and the scorecards showed the competitive nature with cards of 95-95, twice, and 96-95, to Kato.
On the under-card Seiya Fujikita (9-3, 2) [藤北 誠也] scored an unexpected stoppage against former Japanese Flyweight title challenger Yusuke Sakashita (14-7-2, 9) [阪下 優友], in what was a bloody contest with Sakashita being stopped due to a cut.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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