With two IBF champions already, in the form of Katsunari Takayama and Daiki Kameda Japan has an opportunity to add a third in April when Hozumi Hasegawa fights Kiko Martinez for the IBF Super Bantamweight title. It's now been announced that the winner of Hasegawa/Martinez will be facing the winner of an upcoming IBF eliminator between another Japanese fighter, Yasutaka Ishimoto (24-6, 7), and American Chris Avalos (23-2, 17).
Avalos, for those who haven't seen him, is a big punching American who has been shown to have a lot of power, though he does lack somewhat in terms of fundamental boxing skills. Despite his flaws he has scored some notable wins, including a decision last year over Filipino fighter Drian Francisco and a stoppage over Rolly Lunas.
As for Ishimoto, pictured, he made his name on the international stage with a decision over former world champion Wilfredo Vazquez Jr in 2013. He lacks the power of Avalos though has a tricky style, a lot of heart and may well find himself winning another upset against a much fancied American.
The bout, scheduled for May 31st, will be held in Macau on the under-card of Nonito Donaire's world title bout with Simpiwe Vetyeka.
(Picture courtesy of http://boxingnews.jp)