This time next week we'll see hard hitting Japanese fighter Keita Obara (15-1-1, 14) [小原 佳太] face off against unbeaten Russian Eduard Troyanovsky (24-0, 21), as the two men battle for the IBF and IBO Light Welterweight titles.
Today, ahead of that bout, Obara left Japan for Russia. That'll give him about a week to acclimatise to Russian conditions, including the weather and time zone, and to put the finishing touches to his preparations.
At the moment Obara is over the 140lb limit but is in great condition and is expecting to lose the weight relatively comfortably before the weigh-in, next Thursday.
The Japanese was sounding pretty confident as he left Japan, but stated that with the fight being on Russian soil he may only have a 50-50 chance.
Travelling along with Obara is Takashi Misako, the chairman of the Misako gym, who has stated that they've taken a rice cooker over to Russia to cook meals. Mr Misako also stated that he was confident his charge would be able to stop Troyanovsky, though it seemed clear that he too thought the Russian was gaining a lot from home field advantage.
A win for Obara would see him become the first Japanese world champion at 140lbs since Akinobu Hiranaka won the WBA title weigh back in 1992.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!