Over the last fewmonths there has been a lot of speculation regarding what is next for WBA Light Flyweight champion Ryoichi Taguchi (25-2-2, 11) [田口良一]. Originally he had been strongly linked to a Thai foe, but that was later played down and in the last few weeks Taguchi was ordered to face mandatory challenger Robert Barrera (18-1, 12).
Today, at a press conference held by Taguchi's promoter Watanabe, announced that Taguchi Vs Barrera was finally a done deal.
The bout will take place at the Ota City general gymnasium, in Tokyo, and will take place on July 23rd.
For Barrera the bout will be his first world title bout, and his first outside of Latin America, with previous bouts taking place in his native Colombia, as well as El Salvador and Venezuela. Despite that he has a solid reputation with wins over the likes of Luis de la Rosa, a former Taguchi foe, and a very close loss to Carlos Canizales, who fought to a draw with Taguchi last year.
For Taguchi the bout will serve as his 6th defense, and whilst it's a decent one on paper it's likely to only be a stepping stone with the reports suggesting their is a deal agreed in principle for the Watanabe man to face WBO champion Kosei Tanaka (9-0, 5) [田中恒成] in December, in a unification bout. That however does hinge on Taguchi defending his title successfully here against Barrera.
The bout will serve as the "lesser" of two world title bouts, with the other being an IBF Minimumweight title contest between Taguchi's gym mate Hiroto Kyoguchi (7-0, 6) [京口 紘人] and current world champion Jose Argumedo (20-3-1, 12).
For fight fans interested in this show it is set to be televised by TV Tokyo from 19:54 local time on July 23rd.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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