Earlier today the WBO released a statement recognising Kosei Tanaka (15-0, 9) [田中恒成] as the WBO Flyweight "super" champion. They did so at the request of the Tanaka's promoter Hatanaka Gym, lead by Kiyoshi Hatanaka., and listed the reason why they had given him the status.
The WBO "Super" champion status isn't another belt, like the WBA belt, but is more a recognition which gives the champion extra benefits.
It does actually take a bit searching to find out what the WBO "Super" champions actually get as benefits, or privileges as the WBO suggest, but they are listed in section 14 of their regulations:
(1) EXTENSION OF MANDATORY TITLE DEFENSE.
It would seem likely that Tanaka, who been rumoured to be heading up in weight to challenge fellow Japanese world champion Kazuto Ioka (25-2, 14) [井岡一翔], who holds the WBO Super Flyweight title.
However it could also have been requested to delay a mandatory title fight, with Tanaka's last mandatory coming back in August against Jonathan Gonzalez, and the WBO rules on compulsory defenses state a mandatory must be made every 9 months. Giving Tanaka until May to defend his title. This could help set up a potential unification bout instead, something that Tanaka and his team have also sp0ken about.
Interestingly the WBO's regulations do also explain that the privileges of a Super Champion can be lost:
(f) LOSS OF PRIVILEGES
It's going to be interesting to see what Tanaka does with his "Super" championship status, and whether it's staying at 112lbs and unifying or pursuing the much mooted super fight with Ioka, it seems hard to question Tanaka's desire to prove himself as a fighter wanting challenges.
We are now just a day away from seeing the final world title bout of the decade, as WBO Super Flyweight champion Kazuto Ioka (24-2, 14) [井岡一翔] defends his title against mandatory challenger Jeyvier Cintron (11-0-0-1, 5) at the Ota City General Gymnasium.
Today the two men took part in their weigh in for their contest, with the weigh in being staged at the Shinagawa Prince Hotel tower Tokyo.
On the scales Ioka made the limit bang on, weighing 115lbs whilst Cintron, who looked in great condition, was slightly lighter at 114.75lbs.
Ioka stated that everything has gone well in his preparations and he spoke as if he expected that to pay off tomorrow, whilst also delivering a good fight. The plan appears to be for him to add around 9lbs over-night before getting into the ring tomorrow.
Ioka also added that he respect Cintron as a two-time Olympian. Ioka himself had attempted to book a place at the 2008 Olympics before falling just short.
Cintron told the press that he wasn't nervous about the fight tomorrow, adding that he had done what he needed to do to win.
The gloves selected for the two fighters are Everlast, with Ioka wearing a gold on black design and Cintron wearing black on white design.
Related - Ioka and Cintron to clash in final world title bout of the decade!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
On New Year's Eve we'll see WBO Flyweight champion Kosei Tanaka (14-0, 8) [田中恒成] defending his title, for the third time. This time around he'll be up against Chinese challenger Wulan Tuolehazi (13-3-1, 6) [乌兰] in one of the big end of year bouts.
Today the two men weighed in for that bout at the Shinagawa Prince Hotel Tower in Tokyo, and both men made the 112lb weight limit. In fact came bang on the limit.
As well as the weigh in both men also selected their gloves for the fight, with both selecting blue gloves from Japanese manufacturer Winning.
Tanaka explained that whilst this is his third fight of the year this is also the best condition he's been in. He explained that Wulan seemed strong and powerful, but he seemed comfortable enough in himself to do what he wanted in the ring.
Wulan explained that he was relaxed, and that this was a great opportunity that he would seize. He added that he would become a world champion.
For fans in certain areas of Japan this bout will be available on TBS, or affiliates, whilst in China the bout will be shown on CCTV5, among other other outlets.
Related - Tanaka takes on Wulan in year ending WBO Flyweight title bout!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
The most significant of two female title fights tomorrow will see Japan's Miyo Yoshida (13-1) [吉田 実代] defending her WBO female Super Flyweight title against China's Li Ping Shi (5-2, 2). For Yoshida this will be her first defense whilst Shi will be having her first world title bout.
Today the two women took part in the weigh in for their bout, and both fighters made weight, relatively easily.
Yoshida, the shorter woman, came in at around 114.75lbs and looked in good shape, confident and relaxed. After making weight she spoke about not being nervous, and having had time to spend with her kids the last couple of days, after having essentially been ready to fight for a few days. She seemed in a happy place and was honoured to have an opportunity on such a big event.
Shi shocked everyone however by coming in light, and by light we mean really light. Shi was just under 112.25lbs for the bout, closer to the Flyweight limit than the Super Flyweight limit, and she looked in great shape too. Despite coming in so light she sounded full of confidence, stating this was her best weight, and that she was excited bout the bout and confident of winning.
For fans in Japan this bout will be available on Paravi.
Related - Yoshida defends WBO crown against Shi!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier this month the WBO ordered negotiations for a mandatory title fight between WBO Super Flyweight world champion Donnie Nietes (42-1-5, 23) and mandatory challenger Aston Palicte (25-2-1, 21).
The WBO gave the teams from both men 15 days to sort a deal, and yesterday announced that a deal hadn't been reached, so they were ordering a purse bid for the bout.
The purse bid is now set to take place on February 28th in San Juan, with a minimum bid of $100,000.
The bout will be a second meeting between the two men, who fought to a draw last year. Following their draw both men have picked up a win, with Nietes defeating Kazuto Ioka to win the title, and become a 4-weight champion, and Palicte beating Jose Martinez to become the mandatory challenger for the belt.
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