Earlier today in Okayama fight fans saw local hopeful Seigo Yuri Akui (13-2-1, 9) [阿久井政悟] put on a short but thrilling performance, taking out Yoshiki Minato (8-2, 3) [湊義生] inside the opening round.
The bout started fast, and never slowed down, with both men looking to take the other out straight off. The high octane start suited Akui, who is the bigger puncher and the man more suited to that type of fight.
Despite being more suited to a high tempo war Akui was actually dropped early on, though recovered brilliantly and hurt Minato as the two continued to trade after the bout resumed, dropping Minato only moments later. Minato would recover to his feet but was quickly stopped by Akui, who scored a second knockdown and soon afterwards forced the referee to stop the contest, with Akui scoring 8th opening round stoppage.
The fight was hectic, lasting less than 3 minutes, but was brutally exciting, and had more action than most bouts have in significantly more time.
Also on this card was a Japanese Youth Bantamweight title bout, between Tetsu Araki (14-1-1, 2) [荒木哲] and Atsushi Takada (6-1-3, 3) [高田篤志]. The bout saw the skilled Araki From the early stages it was clear that Araki was too sharp, and too technically good for Takada. The skills of Araki saw him landing with speed, then getting out of range, and continuing to do that through the 8 rounds, whilst never really being under any serious pressure. The only really tough time he had was when he stood in the pocket a little too long, and even then he seemed to be getting the better of it.
After 8 rounds there was no debating the winner, with Araki winning 80-72, 80-72 and 79-73 to retain his title and make his first defense of the belt. For Takada this was his first loss, but will serve as a very clear learning experience for the 21 year old.
Earlier today Boxing Raise updated the schedule of shows they will have for this month. Sadly there is only a single live card, though there is 4 different shows to be added on Video on Demand (VOD).
The first show which is set to be added is Gouken 15, which took place earlier today in Sakai city, the card features Daiki Tomita [冨田大樹], former world title challengers Jeffrey Galero and Hiroshige Osawa [大沢宏晋] and the hard matched Daisuke Watanabe [渡部大介].
The second show to be added will be the April 14th card from Mie, headlined by Japanese Youth Super Flyweight champion Yuto Nakamura (9-5, 7) [中村祐斗] defending his title against Toma Kondo (7-4, 1) [近藤冬真] and also featuring former OPBF Super Bantamweight champion Roli Gasca (24-8-1, 8) battling against once beaten Shuma Sugawara (6-1, 4) [菅原秀馬].
The live show comes on April 14th, when we get the long awaited Japanese Bantamweight title unification bout between Yuta Saito (11-9-3, 8) [齊藤裕太] and Hayato Kimura (28-10, 19) [木村隼人]. Although this is live, it will later become available on demand for those unable to watch the show live next Sunday.
On the 20th of April we'll see the Harada promoted card on demand. This card is headlined by an excellent match up between Kosuke Saka (18-4, 15) [坂晃典] and Japanese-Filipino Joe Noynay (16-2-1, 5) who will battle for the WBO Asia Pacific Super Featherweight title. Also on this card will be Tetsuya Hisada (33-9-2, 19) [久田 哲也].
The final card to be added to the service this month will be the April 28th card from Okayama, Japan. This card will be headlined by Seigo Yuri Akui (12-2-1, 8) [阿久井政悟] and Yoshiki Minato (8-1, 3) [湊義生] with a mouth watering support bout between Tetsu Araki (13-1-1, 2) [荒木哲] and Atsushi Takada (6-0-3, 3) [高田篤志], who battle for the Japanese Youth Bantamweight title.
The All Japan Rookie of the Year final at Flyweight this year saw a really exciting contest as Ryohei Arakawa (6-3-1, 3) [荒川竜平] and Yoshiki Minato (8-1, 3) [湊義生] clashed in a fantastic contest, that sae both men being dropped!
Arakawa had the perfect start, sending Minato down after 15 seconds from a right hook. Minato wasn't hurt, but the knockdown seemed to give Arakawa a real air of confidence whilst Minato looked unsure of how to deal with the southpaw stance.
The second round was a mostly quiet one, with Minato trying to figure out Arakawa whilst Arakawa really exposed the fact that his power hand wasn't that dangerous, in fact he almost looked like a right handed southpaw. The round quiet until the last 15 seconds or saw, when Arakawa finally got his straight left hand to land, which drew an immediate response from Minato, and dragged the two men into a breath taking back and forth exchange. It was an exchange that instantly seemed to fill Minato with confidence.
Early in round 3 Minato scored a knockdown of his own, leaving Arakawa with a bloodied nose. Arakawa would get back to his feet, but Minato could smell blood and jumped on him, scoring another knockdown and forcing the referee to step in and stop the contest.
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