Last year we saw Japan's Hiroshige Osawa (30-4-4, 19) [大沢 宏晋] challenge WBO Featherweight champion Oscar Valdez, suffering a 7th round loss to the talented Mexican power puncher. Since that loss, in November, Osawa has been out of action and some did assume that the 31 year old may well have been ready to walk away from the sport.
Instead of walking away Osawa has announced that he is set to return to the ring on June 4th and is set to take on world ranked Ecuadorian Julio Cortez (13-0, 11) in Sakai City.
The little known Cortez is ranked #15 by the WBA at Featherwieght and is the South American Featherweight champoion, having won that title in 2016 and defended it once. As with many fighters from Ecuador, and surrounding countries, little is really known about him though his competition has been less than inspiring so far, and he has yet to fight outside of his homeland.
From the footage of Cortez that's available he does look like an aggressive fighter who looks a bit wild and open, but does appear to have real sting in his fists and does change the tempo with his feet pretty impressively. He does however appear to be a short fighter at the weight and could potentially be kept at range by a fighter with good movement and a solid spiteful jab.
The bout will be a tough test to see what Osawa has left following his loss to Valdez, but at his best it he should be able to over-come the 28 year old visitor and work his way back into the world rankings. It is however a dangerous bout for the likeable Osawa.
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