Tomorrow fight fans at Korakuen Hall will get the chance to see a potential fire fighter as OPBF Bantamweight champion Keita Kurihara (13-5, 11) [栗原 慶太] takes on former world title challenger Warlito Parrenas (26-9-1, 23).
For Kurihara the bout will be his first defense of the regional title, which he won back in December against Yuki Strong Kobayashi, whilst Parrenas will be looking to bounce back from successive losses, to Ryuichi Funai and Sho Ishida.
Today the two fighters took part in their weigh in, and both fighters made weight for the contest, with Kurihara being bang on the limit of 118lbs whilst Parrenas was 117.5lbs.
Despite their not being much between the men on the scales it was clear Kurihara was the natural Bantamweight, towering over the challenger, who looked more like a blown up Super Flyweight than a big Bantamweight. Despite being smaller than the champion Parrenas did appear confident and it's obvious this is a must win bout if his career is going to continue.
Related - Kurihara and Parrenas meet in OPBF title bout!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today the A-Sign boxing twitter account revealed that their May 10th card had now secured it's main event.
The bout that will headline that card will see OPBF Bantamweight champion Keita Kurihara (13-5, 11) [栗原 慶太] defending his title against former world title challenger Warlito Parrenas (26-9-1, 23), what should be an explosive encounter.
The champion will be defending the belt he won on December 24th, in what was a bout marred by officiating errors, for the first time and looking to maintain his current winning run, which stands at 4 fights. As for the challenger, who is best known for losing to Naoya Inoue, he'll be looking to end a 2-fight losing run and get his career back on track.
It should be noted that Parrenas had previously announced his retirement but it seems this opportunity was good enough to end that retirement, and as fans of the sport, we do like the look of this one, a lot.
Earlier today fight fans at the EDION Arena Osaka had the chance to see former world title challengers collide, with once beaten Japanese fighter Sho Ishida (27-1, 15) [石田 匠] taking on Japanese based Filipino Warlito Parrenas (26-9-1, 23).
On paper the bout looked like a mismatch, especially given the fact Parrenas had been stopped last time out by Ryuichi Funai and was now 35 years old. Surprisingly however he gritted his teeth and gave Ishida a surprisingly tough contest, despite a nightmare start.
Ishida had the clear edge in speed, and looked to make that count, but Parrenas managed to land right hands to the body of Ishida, who returned with left hooks to the midsection. In round 2 Parrenas was dropped as one of the body shots from Ishida broke through and he went for the early finish, dropping the Filipino again. It looked like we were going to be seeing the Filipino suffer his 7th stoppage loss, but Parrenas had other things in mind and really gritted his teeth to get his way back into the bout.
Parrenas recovered well from the nightmare he had n round 2, and managed to cut Ishida in round 4, around the right eye, from clean punches. Ishida had good success afterwards, landing sharp and clean punches, but would end up having his nose bloodied as Parrenas' power took it's toll.
Despite his success Parrenas was well behind on the scorecards, with Ishida winning courtesy of scores of scores of 78-74, 78-73 and 78-72. Parrenas seemed to hint this would be his final bout. He was competitive at times, though knew he couldn't match the speed of Ishida, which limited his successes. As for Ishida he spoke about winning a world title next year, and wanting to have a unified title bout with former stablemate Kazuto Ioka (22-1, 13) [井岡一翔], who fights for the WBO Super Flyweight title on December 31st.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Tomorrow fight fans in Osaka will see a fantastic card, featuring several bouts of note. One of those will pit former world title challengers against each other, with Japanese based Filipino Warlito Parrenas (26-8-1, 23) battling against Japan's very own Sho Ishida (26-1, 15) [石田 匠].
The bout, being fought at a contracted 53KG's, 116.8lbs, is a must win for both men if they intend to remain as a contender, and in fact a loss for Parrenas likely ends his career as a professional fighter.
Today the two men weighed in for the bout and both fighters made weight.
The heavier man on the scales was Ishida, who weighed in bang on the limit, and looked confident and relaxed. He spoke very confidently of winning, and suggested the men were on different levels. Parrenas on the other hand was 116.2lbs and spoke of Ishida being a good technical fighter, but he had trained well and seemed like he knows he has the power to score a win, if he can connect clean.
The winner of this bout will likely be moved towards a world title fight in 2019, however the loser will really need to think hard about their career in the new year.
Related - Ishida and Parrenas clash in must win bout!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Over the last few weeks we've seen a number of bouts being revealed for an December 9th card at the EDION Arena Osaka, with them pencilled in for a card that hadn't been officially announced but had had bouts leaked out.
The first of those bouts to lead was a contest between former world title challengers, with Japanese based Filipino Warlito Parrenas (26-8-1, 23) battling against Japan's very own Sho Ishida (26-1, 15) [石田 匠]. That was bout was revealed in late October and a few days later we saw WOZ boxing confirm that their star fighter, and former world title challenger, Shohei Omori (19-2, 14) [大森 将平] would be up against fellow puncher Takahiro Yamamoto (21-5, 17) [山本 隆寛], himself a former OPBF Bantamweight champion.
Despite both of those bouts being good ones, it did feel like the show needed one more big fight, a true main event contest if you will. We had assumed that that main event would feature OPBF Lightweight champion Masayoshi Nakatani (17-0, 11) [中谷正義] but nothing really seemed to develop on that front until yesterday morning, when rumour began to surface that Nakatani would indeed be defending his belt on the show.
The name that was linked to Nakatani was that of the hard hitting and experienced Hurricane Futa (25-7-1, 15) [中岸風太] who has now been confirmed as Nakatani's challenger on the card, which is expected to be officially confirmed over the weekend.
For Nakatani the bout will be his 11th defense, of the title that he won back in January 2014, when he beat Yoshitaka Kato. In recent defenses Nakatani has failed to shine, beating the likes of Tosho Makoto Aoki and Allan Tanada. He was however given a very serious test last time out by Izuki Tomioka.
Futa is a bit known for scoring notable upsets, having scored big surprise wins on the road over Will Tomlinson and Vage Sarukhanyan in recent years. Although is no world beater, but he's heavy handed, tough and confident, and he could well cause Nakatani a really tough test. He is also, surprisingly, getting his second OPBF title bout, after having challenged for the OPBF Super Bantamweight title back in 2007, losing a decision to Thai veteran Wethya Sakmuangklang.
We're expecting a press conference from the Ioka Gym, to officially announce this bout, and the show in general, in the coming days.
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