Every so often we get a match up that really excites us, despite their being no title or world ranking on the line. Today we had such a bout at the Korakuen Hall, as the highly touted Hinata Maruta (8-1-1, 7) [丸田 陽七太] faced off with the big punching Tsuyoshi Tameda (18-4-2, 16) [溜田剛士] at the Korakuen Hall.
On paper the match up was brilliant, pitting two young Japanese prospects against each other, in a 10 round bout. On paper Tameda wasn't just the bigger puncher but also the naturally bigger fighter, whilst Maruta was seen as the more skilled and naturally more gifted fighter.
Maruta looked the sharper fighter, boxing well with his jab and his powerful right hand, but Tameda had success with his own jab, and looked the more imposing man. Sadly for Tameda he was always struggling with the speed and movement of Maruta who began to use his longer reach to land uppercuts and go around the guard with left hooks. Tameda had success in round 4, but the shots of Maruta were taking a toll, and it seemed like Tameda was going to need to find a plan B if he was to build on the success that he had had during the bout.
Before Tameda was able to change how he was fighting Maruta upped the tempo and dropped him in round 5 with a powerful straight. Tameda beat the count but a follow up soon forced the referee to step in and save Tameda.
After the bout Maruta revealed that he had done more road work this time than he had in the past, something that seemed to help him become more confident in his own stamina. It was also his first bout as a Featherweight, and it seems like the weight is the one that best suits him, in fact this is arguably the best he's looked since turning professional. This is possibly the weight that we'll end up seeing him peak at, and potentially challenge for titles at in the near year.
For Tameda the loss is a hard one. He was level on two of the score cards going into round 5, with scores of 38-38, but was down on the third card. He seemed to realise that he was caught, and was struggling to handle the distance of Maruta, who is an incredibly rangy fighter at the weight. Despite the loss he is young enough, hungry enough and powerful enough to bounce back in 2019.
(Image courtest of boxingnews.jp)
Tomorrow fight fans at the Korakuen Hall will get several fantastic match ups. In our opinion the best of the bunch is a contest between Hinata Maruta (7-1-1, 6) [丸田 陽七太] and Tsuyoshi Tameda (18-3-2, 16) [溜田剛士], who will fight in a 10 round Featherweight bout.
Today the two men took part in their weigh in and medical checks, and both fighters managed to pass everything, with no issues.
On the scales both men were comfortably under the 126lb limit. Maruta was around 125.5lbs whilst Tameda, the shorter man, was 125.75lb. Notably this is a move up in weight for Maruta whilst Tameda has fought at 126lbs in a majority of his professional bouts.
This bout is expected to be aired on Fuji TV later in the month, on at least a highlights basis, though sadly there is not yet an announced date for when that will be broadcast. As a result it's only the fans in the venue who are going to be able to see this mouth watering clash in full, and they are incredibly lucky for the fighters and teams willing to take on such a big contest.
Related - Preview - Maruta and Tameda to fight on December 3rd!
(Image courtesy of the Morioka Gym twitter account)
Earlier today Ohashi gym held a press conference to announce the next defense of the OPBF Featherweight title by Satoshi Shimizu (7-0, 7) [清水 聡].
The 2012 Olympic bronze medal winner was flanked by Ohashi gym president Hideyuki Ohashi and trainer Koji Matsumoto at the press conference as they announced Shimizu's next bout.
The fighter will return to the ring on December 3rd to face off with fellow unbeaten Takuya Uehara (16-0, 10) [上原 拓哉] , who held a press conference of his own at the Apollo Gym in Osaka to announce the contest.
For Shimizu the bout will serve as his 4th title defense, and is expected to be his final bout before on wards to a world title fight in early 2019. For Uehara the bout is his first at this level, though he is a former WBC Youth and Japanese Youth champion.
With this announcement we now know that the show, which will be the "66th Phoenix Battle", will be a double header with the card also featuring the mouth watering match up between Hinata Maruta (7-1-1, 6) [丸田 陽七太] and Tsuyoshi Tameda (18-3-2, 16) [溜田剛士]. We also know that the card will feature Kazuki Nakajima (5-0, 4) [中嶋一輝] battling Yoshihiro Utsumi (15-8-3, 10) [宇津見義広] and bouts involving Sho Nakazawa (11-2, 5) [中澤奨] and Taku Kuwahara (2-0, 2) [桑原拓].
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Every so often we get a domestic clash that sends the blood racing and excites us more than it probably should. Today we got an announcement of once such bout, as it was announced we would see two talented youngsters face off in December!
The two men in question were Morioka's star prospect Hinata Maruta (7-1-1, 6) [丸田 陽七太] and hard hitting Ohashi gym prospect Tsuyoshi Tameda (18-3-2, 16) [溜田剛士].
The two fighters will be competing in a Featherweight bout at the Korakuen Hall, with both men having serious title aspirations for 2019. The contest, on December 3rd, looks likely to be the main event of a Phoenix Boxing card, promoted by Tameda's team at the Ohashi Gym. It's a significant step up in class for Tameda given his recent wins over limited opponents, but he has mixed with excellent company in the past, with his most recent losses coming in 2016 to Reiya Abe and Simpiwe Vetyeka and it's fair to saw that Tameda has faced more proven fighters than Maruta.
The 21 year old Maruta, who lost last time he fought at the Korakuen Hall to the then OPBF Super Bantamweight champion Hidenori Otake, will be coming into this bout on the back of a draw in the Philippines to Ben Mananquil, a bout that Maruta seemed to do enough to deserve a win in. He was touted as the next big star from Hyogo but has failed to really live up to expectation in the ring. Here however he has a huge chance to prove himself.
At the moment no other bouts for the card have been announced, but this already makes the show mouth watering.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Yesterday at the Korakuen Hall fight fans had a trio of notable under-card fighters in action, all picking up wins and moving their careers forward.
The first of those was the once touted former amateur standout Sho Nakazawa (11-2, 5) [中澤奨]. Nakazawa had lost his previous bout, an upset defeat to Ryo Hino, and understandably had a confidence booster, stopping Indonesian Ahmad Lahizab (3-6-11, 1) in 3 rounds. The visitor had been dropped early in the fight and twice in round 3 as Nakazawa proved far too good.
The second of those notable under-card fighters was former amateur stand out Kazuki Nakajima (5-0, 4) [中嶋一輝], who impressed before forcing the durable Takuya Fujioka (8-9-1, 1) [藤岡拓弥] to retire on his stool at the end of round 6. The bout had been one sided with Nakajima in total control in what the most impressive performance of his career so far, and the one that may well have seen him really begin to click as a professional. Although the bout looked like a mismatch on paper it's worth noting that Fujioka was coming into this having never been stopped, with a huge upset win last time out against Futa Akizuki and having given Eita Kikuchi and Kosuke Isono real problems in 2017.
The final under-card bout of note saw the hard hitting Tsuyoshi Tameda (18-3-2, 16) [溜田剛士] deciminate Indonesan veteran Arief Blader (23-30-2, 8). Originally Tameda had been scheduled to face Japanese based Korean fighter Tae Il Atsumi (14-2, 7), though that bout fell through with Blader being a late replacement for Tameda and being totally over-matched.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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