Earlier today Japanese fight fans had the chance to see a Japanese Welterweight title fight, as big punchign "regular" champion Toshio Arikawa (15-4, 13) [有川 稔男] took on interim champion Daisuke Sakamoto (14-9-3, 8) [坂本 大輔].
Not only did both men enter as a "champion" but also as men with a history. They had fought a few years ago, with Sakamoto blowing away Arikawa, and had been scheduled to fight earlier this year, before Arikawa suffered an injury in training.
With the two men both looking to walk away as the undisputed Japanese Welterweight champion it was obvious that we were going to see both men look to make a statement.
It was Arikawa who made the first statement, dropping Sakamoto within about 90 seconds, though the referee ruled it a slip. Despite the referee's decision it was clear that Arikawa's heavy hands would be a problem for Sakamoto, and the regular champion would take the first round on all 3 cards. Sakamoto fought back and arguably took the second round, but it wasn't long until Arikawa took over the bout completely, with his superiour boxing and destructive power.
That destructive power of Arikawa's was seen in round 5 as he caught Sakamoto with a right hand and left Sakamoto with a huge, and deep cut on the edge of his left eye.
The cut was an immediate bleeder and the doctor soon looked at the cut, stopping the bout, and giving Arikawa the TKO win, seeing him record the second defense of his title, and avenge his loss to Sakamoto. Sadly for Sakamoto the loss sees him losing the interim title.
(Image courtesy of bobmob.jp)
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