By - George Delis (@Delisketo)
-Zhilei Zhang (20-0): WBO #5
The undefeated Chinese giant and Olympic Silver Medalist beat Don Haynesworth (15-3) this past September in his first WBO Oriental title defense.
-Meng Fanlong (14-0): IBF #8 / WBA #12
Meng stopped the former British & Commonwealth champion Frank Buglioni (22-4), on November 24th, to defend his IBF Intercontinental title for the first time.
Super Lightweight / Jr Welterweight:
-Apinun Khongsong (14-0): IBF #7
The current IBF Asia & Pan Pacific champion has fought 4 times in 2018, all stoppage victories. Khongsong will face Akihiro Kondo (31-7) in an IBF World title Eliminator, on February 18.
-Daud Yordan (38-4): WBA #5
Yordan’s latest success came in April, when he knocked out Pavel Malikov (14-1) to become the WBO Intercontinental champion. He later put on a good performance against former World champion Anthony Crolla (34-6) in a WBA World title eliminator, but it wasn’t enough to get the win.
-Mercito Gesta (32-2): WBO #2
After unsuccessfully challenging Jorge Linares (45-4) for the WBA World championship, Gesta defeated Robert Manzanarez (36-3) for the vacant WBO-NABO title, which he will defend on January 26 at Golden Boy’s first boxing card on DAZN. No opponent has been named as of yet.
-Can Xu (15-2): WBA #2
The reigning WBA International champion will be facing Jesus Rojas (26-2) for the WBA “regular” title on January 26.
-Genesis Servania (32-1): WBO #1 / WBA #3 / IBF #5
Servania has knocked out all of his opponents, since losing to WBO World champion Oscar Valder (24-0) in 2017, including world title contender Carlos Carlson (23-5) in September. He’s now looking for another shot at a World championship, either at Featherweight or at Super Bantamweight. His next confirmed opponent is Carlos Castro (21-0), whom he’ll face in California, on February 10.
-Mark Magsayo (18-0): WBC #1 / WBO #8
The reigning WBO International champion is the number 1 contender for the WBC World title. A match with Gary Russell Jr. (29-1) could be in the works for 2019.
Super Bantamweight / Jr Featherweight:
-Albert Pagara (31-1): WBO #2 / IBF #6
Pagara stopped Laryea Gabriel Odoi (20-4) this past June, to become the WBO Intercontinental champion. He successfully made his inaugural title defense against George Krampah (14-4) on November 24.
-Juan Miguel Elorde (27-1): WBO #3
The WBO Asia Pacific champion marked his third successful title defense in February against Likit Chane (16-8). After dispatching Ratchanon Sawangsoda (12-3) in July, he returned to the ring once more before the year is over, on December 16, and defended his belt against Artid Bamrungauea (21-25).
-Marlon Tapales (31-2): WBO #6 / IBF #7
The former WBO Bantamweight World champion made short work of Goodluck Mrema (22-4) this past September. It’s not certain if Super Bantamweight or Featherweight will be the division Tapales sticks with. His next fight will take place in February, under the MP Promotions banner.
-Jeo Santisima (17-2): WBO #10
The Filipino won the vacant WBO Oriental title, after defeating Likit Chane (16-8) this past summer. In November, he made his first successful defense, against Victor Uriel Lopez (13-10).
-Kenny Demecillo (14-4): IBF #3
Demecillo has fought only once in 2018, scoring a KO win over Vyacheslav Mirzaev (11-1) in Russia. His next scheduled appearance is in March of 2019 as he takes on Michael Dasmarinas (28-2) in an IBF World title eliminator, in Singapore.
-Michael Dasmarinas (28-2): IBF #4 / WBC #11
Dasmarinas knocked out former EBU European champion Karim Guerfi (28-4) this past April to earn the IBO “world” title. His latest fight against Manyo Plange (17-0) came to a draw. He will square off against Kenny Demecillo (14-4), as mentioned above, for a chance at the IBF World title.
-Carl Jammes Martin (11-0): WBO #10 / WBA #14
2018 has been a breakout year for the Filipino, winning 4 fights in the span of only 6 months, plus the WBO Oriental Youth & WBA Asia titles.
-Arthur Villanueva (32-3): WBO #8
The former WBO Asia Pacific champion and world title contender has 1 win and one draw in 2018.
-Tasana Salapat (48-1): WBC #2
“Petch Sor Chitpattana” lost his first fight when he fought Takuma Inoue (13-0) for the interim WBC World championship, on December 30, in Japan.
Super Flyweight / Jr Bantamweight:
-Aston Palicte (24-2): WBO #2 / WBC #6
Palicte will be involved in a WBO World title eliminator with Jose Martinez (20-0) on January 31st.
-Giemel Magramo (23-1): WBO #6 / WBC #7 / WBA #8 / IBF #9
The Filipino captured the vacant WBO Oriental title on March of 2018 and successfully defended it in October, against Petchchorhae Kokietgym (17-2). Magramo kicked off 2019 with a bang as he stopped Wenfeng Ge (11-1) for the WBO International title on January 5th, in China.
-Teeraphong Utaida (38-6): IBF #8
Utaida went 4-0 in 2018, moving up to Flyweight only recently and soon became the IBF Pan Pacific champion.
-Sarawut Thawornkham (20-1): WBA #1
The former WBA Asia champion has fought twice in 2018 and has knocked out both of his opponents.
-Nare Yianleang (68-5): WBA #2 / WBC #5
Since losing to Kazuto Ioka in 2017, “Noknoi Sitthiprasert” has been undefeated in his last 6 fights, but none of them was against a credible opponent.
-Komgrich Nantapech (25-5): IBF #3
Nantapech became the IBF Pan Pacific champion in 2018, when he earned a decision win over Naoki Mochizuki (15-3). He was supposed to face Masayuki Kuroda (30-7) in an IBF World title eliminator bout on November 21st, but due to a sudden injury, he wasn’t able to compete. Komgrich later had to vacate his belt but still managed to pick two more victories before the year was over.
-Wenfeng Ge (11-1): WBO #9 / IBF #13
The former undefeated Chinese prospect took the unanimous decision victory over Ivan Soriano (19-2) as well as the vacant WBO International championship, this past August, before losing it to top ranked Flyweight Giemel Magramo (23-1).
-Sirichai Thaiyen (51-4): WBA #7
The former WBA interim World champion failed the recapture the crown this summer in Ukraine when he fought Artem Dalakian (18-0).
-Jayr Raquinel (10-1): IBF #6
Raquinel won the OPBF title from Keisuke Nakayama (11-3) in March and in 2 months time, he successfully marked his first title defense over Shun Kosaka (15-5). However, he failed to capture the vacant WBC Silver championship, when he boxed with Chinese rising star Wean Tuolehazi (9-3), in September.
-Jonathan Taconing (28-3): WBC #1 / WBO #1 / WBA #2 / IBF #8
Taconing defended his WBC International championship, for the second time, this past September against former world title contender Vince Paras (13-2). A match with Angel Acosta (19-1), for the WBO strap, could be in the works for this coming Spring.
-Edward Heno (13-0): WBO #3 / WBC #4 / WBA #6 / IBF #6
Heno marked 2 successful title defenses of the OPBF championship, within 2018, over Jesse Espinas (19-3) as well as former World champion Merlito Sabillo (27-6). His third OPBF title defense will take place in Japan, against Koji Itagaki (18-13), on February 11.
-Jing Xiang (16-4): WBO #6 / WBC #13
2018 was a quite successful year for Xiang as he, not only captured the vacant WBO Intercontinental title in January, but also earned a huge victory after defeating former World champion Merlito Sabillo (27-6), this past September, to become the WBC Silver champion. 2019 already brought another major test for the Chinese rising star as he successfully defended his WBC Silver title against 2 division World champion Suriyan Satorn (59-7), on January 5th, in China.
-Christian Araneta (17-0): IBF #4 / WBA #9 / WBC #10 / WBO #11
Araneta added 3 more wins to his perfect record, in 2018, including a stoppage victory over former world title contender Jerry Tomogdan (26-10), in August.
-Rey Loreto (24-14): WBC #5
After a failed attempt to dethrone Thammanoon Niyomtrong (19-0) in 2017, Loreto returned this past February and knocked out journeyman Arnold Garde (10-6).
-Pongsaklek Sithdabni (17-6): WBC #8
The WBC Asia champion finished 2018 with a 3-2 record.
-Robert Paradero (17-0): WBO #1
Paradero is supposed to face Wilfredo Mendez (11-1) in a WBO World title eliminator this coming January. The winner will be next in line to challenge Vic Saludar (18-3) for the gold.
-Chaozhong Xiong (27-8): WBA #9
Xiong tried to become a 2 time World champion when he fought Thammanoon Niyomtrong (19-0) in July, but it wasn’t meant to be. No news yet if that was his last match or not.
-Rene Mark Cuarto (16-1): IBF #7 / WBO #8
Cuarto won his first championship in August after he fought Clyde Azarcon (14-2) for the vacant WBO Oriental title.
-Samuel Salva (16-0): IBF #5
The Filipino prospect remained undefeated in 2018 as well, thus adding 4 more victories to his record.
-Pedro Taduran (13-2): IBF #10 / WBC #12
Taduran began 2018 very promising as he dropped former world title challenger Jerry Tomogdan (26-10) in the fifth round, but couldn’t capitalize on that momentum in his World championship bout against Chayaphon Moonsri (52-0). He beat Jeffrey Galero (17-6) on December 7.
-Mark Anthony Barriga (9-1): IBF #3 / WBA #5
Barriga failed to capture the vacant IBF World Championship in December.
-Joey Canoy (14-3): WBO #10
Canoy recently challenged Simpiwe Konkco (19-5) for the IBO “world” title but the fight ended in a no contest.
When we have some free time we're hoping to add a series of fun articles to the site. Hopefully these will be enjoyable little short features