Just 2 weeks after Shinsuke Yamanaka [山中慎介] and Dangan announced an A Class Bantamweight tournament we now see Dangan, along with JB Sports Gym, announce a similar Featherweight tournament.
This tournament is to celebrate 30 years of the popular manga Hajime No Ippo, which is created by Jyoji Morikawa the owner of the JB Sports gym.
At the moment the full details, such as which fighters will be involved, haven't been revealed but we do have some early informational about the tournament.
The tournament is expected to kick off on August 27th and be an 8 man tournament, all of the fighters being A class licensed fighters. The winners from the first round of bouts will advances to the semi finals in November with a final taking place in February next year for a cash prize.
The scheduling is interesting given the Bantamweight tournament is to began in July with their semi-finals in October 31st and the final in January. That leaves open a potential gap for another tournament maybe starting in September, with a semi-final round in December and potential final in March. That is however speculation on our behalf at the moment.
Last year Japanese legend Shinsuke Yamanaka [山中慎介] announced his retirement from fighting. It wasn't however a retirement from all boxing related activity and today he, along with Shota Furusawa from DANGAN took part in a press conference.
The conference, of course, had a purpose and that was to announce a new 8 man Bantamweight tournament, for A class fighters in Japan, giving the winner not only a sizable cash prize but also a huge career boost.
The tournament will feature 8 class fighters with preliminary round bouts pencilled in for July 23rd. The semi-final bouts will take place on October 31st with the final taking place in January for a ¥ 1 million.
The plan is to have the first round bouts fought over 6 rounds with the other bouts being scheduled for 8 round. There is however some flexibility build into the system and if a bout is actually for a title as well as part of the tournament the length of a bout can be extended to accommodate the title. There is also rules in principle for a tie breaker on a draw or a technical draw.
Fighters, of any age, have until May 15th to get their application to Dangan, with the draw being made later that month. If there is a big number of applicants, a number of things will be looked at when selecting the 8 fighters, including records, amateur pedigree and KO rate.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Over the last couple of hours we have looked at some individual award winners at today's Japanese boxing awards, held in the amazing Tokyo Dome Hotel. For those who just want to see the winners in a list here we go:
The MVP was:
Naoya Inoue (17-0, 15) [井上 尚弥]
The Skills Award was won by:
Kosei Tanaka (12-0, 7) [田中恒成]
The KO Award was won by:
Naoya Inoue (17-0, 15) [井上 尚弥]
Special Award was won by:
Masayuki Ito (25-1-1, 13) [伊藤 雅雪]
The Effort Award was won by:
Masayoshi Nakatani (18-0, 12) [中谷正義]
The Newcomer Award was won by:
Kazuto Takesako (10-0, 10) [竹迫司登]
The Best World title Fight:
Sho Kimura [木村翔] Vs Kosei Tanaka [田中恒成]
The Best Japanese Domestic fight:
Yusaku Kuga [久我勇作] Vs Shingo Wake [和氣 慎吾]
Female fighter of the year was:
Tenkai Tsunami (26-12, 15) [天海 ツナミ]
Female Fight of the Year was:
Kayoko Ebata [江畑佳代子] Vs Etsuko Tada [多田悦子]
Trainer of the Year was:
Shingo Inoue [井上真吾]
A Special Achievement Award was won by:
Shinsuke Yamanaka [山中慎介]
Special Prizes were given to:
Toshiyuki Igarashi [五十嵐 俊幸]
Naoko Shibata [柴田 直子]
Nana Yoshikawa [好川 菜々]
Ryuya Yamanaka [山中 竜也]
And Momo Koseki [小関 桃]
A social Contribution prize was given too:
Naoko Fujioka (17-2, 7) [藤岡 奈穂子]
JBC Service Achievements were won by
Akira Tabata, who has served as a timekeeper, and Hiroyuki Tokuzaki, a referee who sadly passed away in October.
Several other officials earned awards for their roles in the sport as well, as did Atsushi Sato, a producer at WOWOW.
It's also worth noting that every male fighter who held a world title at some point during the year won an Outstanding Fighter Award, this is a normal thing to recognise all champions. We won't list them all here though they obviously included Kenshiro [拳四朗] and Hiroto Kyoguchi [京口 紘人] among others.
As for amateur awards, the best male fighter was:
Daisuke Narimatsu [成松大介]
and the best female fighter was:
Tsukimi Namiki [並木月海]
(Image courtesy of Boxingnews.jp)
Earlier today saw the Japan Professional Sports Grand Prize award ceremony take place in Tokyo. The ceremony saw 3 Japanese boxers being given awards.
A "Special" prize was given to WBA "Regular" Bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue (17-0, 15) [井上 尚弥], who fought for just over 3 minutes this year, but impressed with his 2 performances and left no illussion as to whether he was a special athlete or not.
The "Achievement Award" was won by former WBC Bantamweight champion Shinsuke Yamanaka (27-2-2, 19) [山中慎介], who retired earlier this year following his second loss to Luis Nery.
The third award winner was WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (24-1-1, 12) [伊藤 雅雪], who took the "Newcomer Award". The talented Ito really made his mark with his title win and has become a notable star in Japan during the year as a result of his performance against Christopher Diaz in the US.
Earlier today it was announced that DAZN would be the only way for Japanese fight fans to watch the upcoming Heavyweight world title fight between Anthony Joshua (21-0, 20) and Alexander Povetkin (34-1, 24), which takes place this coming weekend.
Originally it seemed like WOWOW would pick the bout up but as we got closer and closer to fight time and WOWOW hadn't made an announcement there was worries that there would be no legal way for the Japanese fans to watch the contest.
With today's announcement it does stop those worries and will allow new customers to get a look at the subscription service ahead of the WBA Middleweight title bout between Ryota Murata (14-1, 11) [村田 諒太] and Rob Brant (23-1, 16).
The Japanese broadcast of Joshua Vs Povetkin is set to begin at 2:10 local time with the main event scheduled for around 5:50 local time. The undercard will only feature English commentary whilst the main event is set to feature Japanese commentary, including guest commentary from Shinsuke Yamanaka.
(Image courtesy of DAZN)
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