The bout, for the OPBF Minimumweight title, saw Hara being the slightly heavier man as he came in on the divisional limit of 105lbs exactly whilst Tanaka came in just a shade lighter at 104.75lbs. For Hara this is the same weight he has weight in 4 of his last 6 bouts whilst for Tanaka his weight was a career lightest, though it was the first time he contracted to actually fight as a Minimumweight.
Despite being lighter Tanaka towered over Hara by a few clear inches at the weigh in and was clear that the 19 year old "Monster of Chukyo" was naturally bigger than the 24 year old champion. As for Hara his real advantages are experience and this will be his 6th title bout in a little over 2 years whilst Tanaka is fighting in his first.
Whilst Tanaka is clearly the less experienced fighter the expectation is on his shoulders and his manager Kiyoshi Hatanaka has re-stated that if Tanaka wins he will be getting a world title fight next time out, attempting to break the Japanese national record of Naoya Inoue who took 6 fights to win a world title. In fact if Tanaka wins tomorrow he'll break one Japanese record by becoming the "quickest" Japanese fighter to an OPBF title!
We've got to admit we were excited about this one when it was first informally announced on Hara's own blog and now, with a day to go we are even more excited for what could well be the coming out party for the newest star in boxing.
For those wanting to read our preview it's here in full.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)