News from the WBA earlier today announced 2 mandatory title fights that could sadly put off major bouts for Japanese fighters.
At Bantamweight it was announced that Anselmo Moreno (34-2, 12), the WBA "super" champion, would have to defend his title against unbeaten Dominican Juan Carlos Payano (14-0, 8). Originally Moreno was supposed to defend against the then regular champion Koki Kameda though Koki vacated the title to drop down to Super Flyweight. As a result of Koki vacating the belt, the WBA have decided that Moreno would have to fight Payano instead.
For Japanese fans this bout really scuppers the possibility of Moreno taking on Japan's Shinsuke Yamanaka (20-0-2, 15) who has openly said that he'd like the bout and the opportunity to unify the WBA "super" title with his own WBC title.
Whilst Japanese fans have every right to be disappointed we dare say that Filipino fans might have an slight grin on their face as Payano will likely be dominated by Moreno. Of course this would perhaps feel like revenge for Filipino's after Payano scored a KO of the Year contender against the then unbeaten Jundy Maraon (15-1-1, 12).
At Super Featherweight the WBA announced that their "interim" champion Bryan Vasquez (32-1, 17) would be forced to defend against the unbeaten Javier Fortuna (23-0-1, 17). Vasquez is currently talking about a rematch with regular champion Takashi Uchiyama (20-0-1, 17) somewhere down the line though will, of course, need to get past Fortuna here. The two men met for the first time back on December 31st 2012 with Uchiyama stopping Vasquez in round 8 despite a spirited effort from Vasquez. Unfortunately we can't see much more than a repeat result if a rematch is made somewhere down the line.
Unfortunately if Uchiyama/Vasquez II is made it could ruin plans for Uchiyama to rematch Takashi Miura (26-2-2, 19) in a WBA-WBC unificaion or to see Uchiyama face American star Mikey Garcia (33-0, 28) in a WBA-WBO unification bout.
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