Earlier this week was Setsubun, a festival to celebrate the start of Spring in Japan. The event, also known as the Bean-Throwing Festival, had three special guest at the Arai Yakushi temple, they were Watanabe world champion trio Takashi Uchiyama (22-0-1, 18), Kohei Kono (30-8-1, 13) and Ryoichi Taguchi (21-2-1, 8).
The festival is to celebrate the start of Spring and generally sees celebrities throwing beans as they try to ward of spirits and wish good luck for the coming year.
Although the festival it's self hasn't made much of a mark on the western it is a big event in Japan, especially the Kansai region and the fact the fighters were involved in such high profiles roles will help them continue to build their presence ahead of future bouts
Talking of future bouts it stills seems likely that the trio will be on the same card as each other later in the year as all 3 men look to continue their reigns as champions. For Uchiyama his reign has been well established since he stopped Juan Carlos Salgado for the title back in back in January 2010. His next defense will be his 10th as he begins to move towards the long standing record of 13 world title defenses by Yoko Gushiken.
For stablemates Kono and Taguchi they are only at the beginning of their reigns. Kono, who won the title early last year when he stopped Denkaosan Kaovichit, has made just a single defence, recording a draw with Norberto Jimenez on New Years Eve whilst Taguchi is a new crowned champion looking for the first defence of the title he won at the end of last year when he out pointed Alberto Rossel.
(Images courtesy of http://www.watanabegym.com)
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