One of those bouts came at 160lbs, and looked like a contest that promised fire works, as the top 2 Japanese ranked Middleweights faced off. In one corner was former domestic amateur star Shoma Fukumoto (11-2, 9) [福本祥馬] and in the other was the heavy handed Kazuto Takesako (7-0, 7) [竹迫司登], and it was clear given their power that the bout was never going to last long. Despite that most would have expected a longer bout than we actually got.
Straight from the opening bell the two fighters met each other in center ring, and from there it was clear we were in for something very exciting.
The two really just let shots go from the off, each believing in their own power and toughness. Within seconds both Fukumoto had taken a low blow, forcing the referee to split them, before going low him, repaying the favour. Despite the low it was clear that neither man had done it it on purpose and instead both were just letting their shots go a bit too freely.
After about 80 seconds of thrilling action Takesako had a break through, as he connected with a right hand that went through the guard of Fukumoto sending him down hard. Although he tried to beat the count the referee quickly stopped the bout, knowing that it would have been unsafe to allow it to continue.
With the win Takesako is now set to get a crack at the Japanese Middleweight champion Hikaru Nishida (17-8-1, 8) [西田 光] in 2018 during the Champion Carnival, in what should be a potential Japanese Fight of the Year contender. For Fukumoto it's back to the drawing board after his second stoppage loss.
(Image courtest of boxmob.jp)