Last month fans saw Hidenori Otake challenge WBA Super Bantamweight champion Scott Quigg in Liverpool, England. A few weeks prior to that bout Otake was the Japanese Super Bantamweight champion though chose to vacate the belt to focus on his world title aspirations. This weekend will see the vacancy of filled and a new Japanese champion crowned at 122lbs.
To fill the vacancy the JBC ordered a bout between their top contenders, Yukinori Oguni (13-1, 4) and Yasutaka Ishimoto (14-7, 7), a bout that looks extremely interesting despite neither being a banger.
Earlier today both Oguni and Ishimoto weighed in for the bout and both made the weight, bang on the divisional limit.
Coming in to this bout the men are ranked #1 and #2 in Japan and both have tasted title glory in the past. Ishimoto is a former WBO International champion, a title he won when he upset Wilfredo Vazquez Jr in Macau, whilst Oguni is a former OPBF champion, winning that title in his first contest with Filipino Roli Gasca. Despite those reigns as champions both know that this is a career changing bout that will mean more than any other previous win.
Despite title glory both have also tasted recent defeat. For Ishimoto this is his first bout since being stopped by Chris Avalos in an IBF world title eliminator. As for Oguni this is his 4th bout since he last fought in a title contest, losing his OPBF title ans suffering a stoppage defeat at the hands of Shingo Wake.
A loss isn't the end for either man, but it it will leave them seriously pondering their future in the sport.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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