Earlier today the East Japan Boxing Association announced their monthly award winners for the month of August, with 3 award winners being announced.
The MVP for the month was 2012 Olympic bronze medal Satoshi Shimizu (7-0, 7) [清水 聡] who made his third defense of the OPBF Featherweight title, as he stopped Shingo Kawamura (16-4-1, 8) [河村真吾]. He was given his first test, with Kawamura taking the fight to Shimizu, before breaking down the challenger and recording his 7th straight stoppage win.
Shimizu is now said to be pursuing a world title fight, and this win will have served as a test, not a world class one, but as a good test all the same.
The Fighting Spirit award was also won by a title holder, with Japanese Minimumweight champion Shin Ono (23-9-3, 6) [小野 心] claiming the award thanks to his stoppage win over youngster Riku Kano (13-4-1, 7) [加納 陸]. The bout saw Ono fighting through a nasty cut to stop Kano and make his first defense of the title.
Interestingly since this win Ono has been strongly linked to a potential WBC world title fight against Wanheng Menayothin (51-0, 18) [วันเฮง ไก่ย่างห้าดาวยิม], with rumours suggesting that bout could be held on December 31st.
The new-comer award was won by Kenshin Oshima (4-1-1, 3) [大嶋剣心], who took a close decision win over Joe Tanooka (15-5-4, 1) [田之岡条]. This was a very competitive bout, with Oshima just doing enough to take the win on the judges score cards.
The winners will receive their awards on October 11th at the Diamond Glove show held at the Korakuen Hall.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier this week we saw WBC Minimumweight champion Wanheng Menayothin (51-0, 18) [วันเฮง ไก่ย่างห้าดาวยิม] record his 10th defense and suddenly become a minor boxing star, as he surpassed the 50-0 recorcd of Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Since then there has been a massive increase in boxing fans talking about the Thai, either criticising his record or applauding him for his long unbeaten reign. But that talk doesn't seem to stop any time soon, and his team are clearly not discussing retirement yet.
Prior to his recent bout with Pedro Taduran it was reported that he was looking to defend his WBC title later in the year in Japan. Now there is a few more details being revealed about that potential bout
Thai sources are now reporting that Wanheng isn't just looking to fight in Japan but is looking to do so on a Watanabe promoted New Year's Eve card, something that would be relatively huge given the audiences that attend and tune in to those end of year shows in the country.
Given the date and promotional contact the most obvious opponent would be Japanese Minimumweight champion Shin Ono (23-9-3, 6) [小野 心]. He's promoted by the Watanabe Gym, and they are looking to continue their run of shows on December 31st. It would fit perfect on a card that would also, potentially, feature Hiroto Kyoguchi (10-0, 7) [京口 紘人] facing off with WBA Light Flyweight super champion Hekkie Budler (32-3, 10). They are also said to have been in touch with Wanheng's promoter prior to Wanheng's 51st career victory.
Interestingly there's also speculation that Ono's stablemate Ryoichi Taguchi (27-3-2, 12) [田口良一] will be fighting in a Flyweight world title bout on the same card, which appears to be slowly getting put together at the moment. The obvious option for Taguchi's Flyweight title bout would be against the winner of the upcoming WBO title fight between Sho Kimura (17-1-2, 10) [木村翔] and Kosei Tanaka (11-0, 7) [田中恒成].
Another very serious possibility, if Ono is unable to have the bout this year due to a cut or other injury, is a rematch with Wanheng facing Tatsuya Fukuhara (21-6-6, 7) [福原 辰弥], who had been spoken to about a title fight with a Thai earlier in the year and would make for a very fan friendly contest. Though he does seem more likely to be challenging WBA champion Knockout CP Freshmart.
A third possibility would be OPBF champion Tsubasa Koura (13-0, 9) [小浦 翼], if Koura successfully defends his title later this month. So far Koura has mostly fought on the Boxingraise service so doesn't seem to have any television commitments and would make for a very exciting challenger for Wanheng.
We suspect that that Koura would be preferable to Fukuhara, given his own unbeaten record and style, but even he would be second choice behind Ono, who has shown himself to be just under-world class with decision losses to Katsunari Takayama and Knockout CP Freshmart, and is of course a Watanabe promoted fighter and would be by far the easiest to make a bout with.
(Image courtesy of Siamsport)
On Wednesday we'll see WBC Minimumweight champion Wanheng Menayothin (50-0, 18) [วันเฮง ไก่ย่างห้าดาวยิม] take on Filipino Pedro Taduran (12-1, 9), in what will be Wanheng's 10th defense of the title. If he wins Wanheng will impressively move to 51-0, a record that surpasses that of Floyd Mayweather Jr, who retired with a record of 50-0.
On Tuesday Wanheng and Taduran will take part in the weigh in for their contest before facing off in the ring on Wednesday.
Interestingly it seems that Wanheng's team are not taking Taduran that seriously with a revelation from Thailand that the champion's team is already trying to line up his next bout. The hope is for that bout to take place towards the end of this year in Japan, in what would be Wanheng's first bout the Land of the Rising sun.
At the moment it's unclear who he would be defending his gold against in Japan but there are several very interesting options. These could include a possible showdown with Japanese Minimumweight champion Shin Ono (23-9-3, 6) [小野 心], who recently defended his title again Riku Kano [加納 陸], or OPBF champion Tsubasa Koura (13-0, 9) [小浦 翼] if he successfully defends his belt against Daiki Tomita (12-0, 4) [冨田大樹] on September 29th, or a potential rematch with Tatsuya Fukuhara (21-6-6, 7) [福原 辰弥]
If it was to be Wanheng Vs Ono it would almost certainly be part of a December 31st card TBS promoted by Watanabe, which is also expected to feature Hiroto Kyoguchi (10-0, 7) [京口 紘人] battling against WBA Light Flyweight super champion Hekkie Budler (32-3, 10), and a potential WBO Flyweight title fight. If it was to Koura who faces Wanheng then the bout would likely be on Fuji TV alongside a potential Naoya Inoue (16-0, 14) [井上 尚弥] bout.
Of the three options it's only a the Fukuhara rematch that doesn't have a clear avenue to a television company, but given the nature of the bout we would be surprised if no one picked up.
Related -Wanheng hunts 51st straight win, takes on Filipino youngster Taduran in WBC title defense!
(Image courtesy of Thairec.com)
Earlier today at the Korakuen Hall Japanese Minimumweight champion Shin Ono (23-9-3, 6) [小野 心] scored his first defense of the title, though did in somewhat controversial fashion as he stopped youngster Riku Kano (13-4-1, 7) [加納 陸].
The bout began with Kano looking he faster, sharper fighter. Despite the good start by Kano only one of the 3 judges actually gave him the round, despite the youngster looking like the boss with his speed and movement. The good start did however continue into round 2, a round that all 3 judges gave to the challenger who was looking like he wanted to make an impression on his Korakuen Debut.
Ono upped the pace in rounds 3 and 4 as he began to increase his work rate. It made the bout messy, but saw him land some big body shots, slowing down Kano, and out dragging the youngster out of his gameplan. It was brilliant from Ono who had began to neutralise the speed difference.
Round 5 was the most competitive in the first half of the fight, and really should have decided who was in the lead, in what beginning to represent a really competitive and close contest. Strangely however two judges had the bout 49-46 to Ono, a score that really discredited Kano's work in the first two rounds, with the third judge having the challenger in the lead, 48-47.
Round 6 was a good one for Kano, who managed to cut Ono above the left eye, in what was a nasty looking cut, that bled through out the round. It was a messy cut that could have resulted in the bout being stopped, with the doctor giving it a close inspection. It seemed to trouble Ono, who didn't look himself through the round and seemed to be bothered by the blood, and the placement of the cut.
Amazingly Ono's team tidied the cut up amazingly well and in round 7 it wasn't and issue at all, a real testament to the work done in the corner. With the cut tidied up Ono seemed more himself, and went back on the front foot, though Kano seemed to be very comfortable and managed to reopen the wound at the end of the round.
Ono came out for round 8 like a man point to prove. He made the fight messy again, , letting shots go when he was close, and landing some really eye catching head shots. He was dragging Kano in deep and making the youngster fight at a high tempo. Mid way through the round controversy struck with a brutal clash of heads. Neither man was cut by it, but Kano was dropped by it and looked in agony on his knees. He quickly taken over to a neutral corner and looked badly shaken.
Although it was an accidental headclash it done clear damage for Kano and Ono seemed to know it, jumping on Kano when the fight resumed. The attack from Ono sent Kano down. The youngster got back to his feet but would be sent down again by another Ono flurry with the bout then being stopped.
Whilst no one would argue the headclash was deliberate it certainly seemed to be the start of the end for Kano who never looked himself afterwards. It opened the door for Ono, who went all out looking for the stoppage and got it.
For Ono this was a huge victory, and could help him get a second world title fight. For Kano the bout leaves a lot of questions, and although we don't doubt the headbutt was painful the way he fought afterwards was like a fighter who was mentally beaten, leaving some questions about his mental toughness, especially given how Ono gritted his teeth and fought through the nasty cut. It was a real case of a fighter with desire against one, who perhaps have the same hunger to be a champion.
(Images courtesy of boxmob.jp and boxingnews.jp)
Tomorrow fight fans at the Korakuen Hall, and those who have subscribed to the Boxingraise service, will get the chance to see two Japanese title fights.
One of those will see youngster Riku Kano (13-3-1, 7) [加納 陸] challenge Japanese Minimumweight champion Shin Ono (22-9-3, 5) [小野 心], with Ono looking to make his first defense of the title he won earlier this year.
Today those two fighters took part in their weigh in for the contest, and both fighters made weight.
The 35 year old Ono made weight bang on, weighing 105lbs and looked good at the weigh in. Despite being significantly older than the challenger he didn't look a man who is 15 years older than Kano and didn't look like a fighter who has had a 17 year career in the sport.
Kano on the other hand came in with some room to spare, at 104.7lbs. He looked in great shape, and was significantly more ripped than the champion. Although looking the more in shape fighter we suspect Kano will look to rely on his youth and speed and will to out box Ono rather than try and have a brawl with him
Related - Kano and Ono meet in battle of Young Lion vs. Old Lion!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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