Earlier today fight fans at the Central Gym in Kobe saw former WBA Super Bantamweight champion Shun Kubo (13-1, 9) [久保隼] battle against former world title challenger Hiroshige Osawa (33-5-4, 19) [大沢 宏晋] in a bout touted as a "Survival Bout".
The bout was seen as a must win for both men, with Kubo needing to bounce back from his 2017 loss to Daniel Roman and Osawa, at the age of 32, really was unable to afford another loss if he was to get a second world title shot.
Kubo got off an excellebt start, using his lets well and out speeding the older man whilst landing his left straight left hands. The younger man held the early control in the bout and had won the first 3 rounds on all 3 cards whilst also leaving Osawa with a bloodied nose.
The fight swung in round, despite Osawa being deducted a point for holding. It was a round that saw Kubo suffer a cut to his right eye from a head clash. With the cut bothering Kubo it allowed Osawa to get some momentum, and he did juts that in round 6 as he began to cut the distance and get to work on the inside. Kubo would himself be deducted a point for hold in round 7 as Osawa began to rack up rounds and have a very spirited comeback.
The fight back from Osawa wouldn't be enough in the end, with Kubo fighting back well in the final 2 rounds to sneak a split decision, with scores of 96-93 and 97-95 in his favour, whilst the other judge went with a score of 95-94 to Osawa.
With the win Kubo remains in the mix for a world title fight at Featherweight, whilst Osawa's career really is hanging by a thread whilst his 33rd birthday is just around the corner.
(Image courtesy of boxmb.jp)
Earlier today Japanese sources reported an intriguing clash had been signed for April 28th at the Kobe Central Gymnasium. The bout in question will see former WBA Super Bantamweight champion Shun Kubo (12-1, 9) [久保隼] facing off with former world title challenger Hiroshige Osawa (33-4-4, 19) [大沢 宏晋], in a bout that will see Kubo move up to Featherweight and look to restart his career whilst Osawa looks to continue his good run of recent results.
Kubo claimed the WBA Super Bantamweight world title last April, when he scored a 10th round retirement win over veteran Nehomar Cermeno. Sadly however his reign was a short lived one as he was stopped in 9 rounds by Daniel Roman in September, as he attempted to record his first defense of the title. The Shinsei man, 27, has always had a long and gangly frame that should be filled out better at 126lbs, but this will be his first contest since the defeat to Roman and it is a very tricky comeback fight for the man some viewed as Shinsei's next star.
Although less successful at world level Osawa is arguably more well known, thanks to his 2016 fight in Las Vegas with WBO Featherweight champion Oscar Valdez. Although Osawa was stopped in 7 rounds by Valdez he did show the heart and determination that we typically see with Japanese fighters. Since that loss he has reeled off a trio of wins, including notable victories over Julio Cortez and Alexander Mejia, who were both world ranked prior to facing Osawa. Although clearly a solid contender Osawa is now 32 and another loss likely spells the end of his dreams to become a world champion.
The bout will headline a Shinsei Gym card, under the "Real Spirits" banner and will essentially be a worldtitle eliminator, with both men having WBA world rankings at Featherweight.
At the moment no details regarding the under-card have been released, but with so many top Shinsei fighters in action in March we're next expecting too much depth this show.
Earlier today boxingscene writer Steve Kim broke the news that Japanese youngster Ryo Matsumoto (21-1, 19) [松本亮] was finally set to get a long awaited world title fight, with the Ohashi man now set to face WBA Super Bantamweight champion Daniel Roman (23-2-1, 9) on February 28th at the Korakuen Hall.
The bout will be Roman's first defense of the title he won earlier this year, when he claimed the title in Japan as he stopped the previously unbeaten Shun Kubo (12-1, 9) [久保隼] in 9 rounds. The fight saw the Japanese fans take to Roman, who had a style that was very exciting, and whilst their disappointment at Kubo's loss was clear they did show a lot of respect to Roman for his performance and win.
For Matsumoto it will be a long awaited first world title figfht, and will see him trying to add a world title to a collection that includes an OPBF Super Flyweight title. He bounced back really well form his sole defeat, a stoppage to Victor Uriel Lopez back in 2016, an has not only avenged his loss but racked up 4 stoppages since that defeat. He has long been touted as a future Japanese star and one of the faces of the Ohashi gym, and a win here would help him become both of those things.
At the moment there is no news at all in Japan about the contest, though Ohashi may well make some noise about the contest later this year.
Original article by Steve Kim can be found here.
(Image courteys of Ohashi Gym)
Earlier today fight fans in Japan saw the previously unbeaten Shun Kubo (12-1, 9) [久保隼] lose the WBA Super Bantamweight title to Amerian challenger Daniel Roman (23-2-1, 9). It wasn't just fans who were watching however as several other members of the Japanese boxing community were in attendance, including Super Bantamweight contender Tomoki Kameda (34-2, 20) [亀田和毅].
Tomoki, along with older brother and trainer Koki Kameda [亀田 興毅], were particularly interested in the bout as Tomoki was ranked #3 by the WBA, only behind Moises Flores and Roman himself.
After the fight Tomoki admitted that he wanted Kubo to win, as an all-Japanese title bout did excite him, but he's happy to fight Roman and is confident of beating the new champion if he becomes the mandatory for the WBA title. He is however in no rush to announce his next fight as he's got an eye on the upcoming IBF title fight between defending champion Yukinori Oguni's (19-1-1, 7) [小國 以載] and mandatory challenger Ryosuke Iwasa (23-2, 15) [岩佐 亮佑], which would give Tomoki an all-Japanese title bout.
As for Roman he himself stated that he was happy to return to Japan to defend his newly won title as long as certain conditions were met, presumably finances would be the key. Not only is he happy to face anyone but also do a rematch with Kubo if the former champion wants a rematch, which after today's fight he won't be in a rush for.
It should be noted Tomoki won't be the only Japanese fighter looking at Roman as a potential foe with Shingo Wake (21-5-2, 13) [和氣 慎吾], Yusaku Kuga (15-2-1, 10) [久我 勇作], and Hidenori Otake (29-2-3, 13) [大竹 秀典] and Hinata Maruta (5-0, 4) [丸田 陽七太], who face off in October, all likely looking for a world title bout in the near future.
(Image courtesy of daily.co.jp)
Earlier today fight fans in Kyoto saw a WBA Super Bantamweight title fight,sadly for those fans they also saw local star Shun Kubo (12-1, 9) [久保隼] suffer a 9th round TKO loss to Amerian Daniel Roman (23-2-1, 9), who dethroned Kubo of the title.
Part of the commentary team for that bout former Japanese star Hozumi Hasegawa (36-5, 16) [長谷川 穂積], who was also a member of the Shinsei gym which manages Kubo, talk about the loss of Kubo's.
Hasegawa was critical of his former stablemate, speaking about the clear weaknesses that Kubo showed, such as his inability to clinch and learn how to get out of the situation he kept finding himself in. Given the pressure of Roman clinching would have been a great tool in Kubo's arsenal, and given him a chance to slow the grinding effect of the American, but he didn't clinch at all. Whilst that may not have lead to Kubo winning, it would certainly have helped his chances, and potentially have frustrated Roman and given Kubo a chance to create some space from. It could well be a lack of experience, a lack of confidence or just not know how to clinch, but today's loss will lead to his team working on that aspect of his game.
Although critical Hasegawa did also see the loss as a chance to learn, and as a chance to learn from the loss. The experience will help improve Kubo as a fighter and, also Hasegawa stated that fans empathise with losers, like himself, and it's likely that the guts Kubo showed will help him build a fan base, potentially even bigger than had he won.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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