Kono, who had to pull out of a previously scheduled date for the bout due to a rib injury, hasn't sparred a lot for the upcoming bout but has recently began sparring with gym mate Shin Ono (18-6-2, 2), who is himself preparing for a Japanese Light Flyweight title fight on September 17th.
From what we under-stand Kono is sparring with a special protector around his ribs to stop the injury from reoccurring.
Although the world title bout has been one of the longest playing sagas in world boxing we're glad that it's almost over and that a date, venue and broadcaster have all been sorted out. As for Ono it's great that his bout is now sorted and for him to be sparring with a world champion, and sharing a gym with two other world champions, will seriously help him ahead of his bout with Kenichi Horikawa (29-13-1, 6).
(Image courtesy of Kohei Kono's blog)