By - George Delis (@Delisketo)
-Zhilei Zhang (20-0): WBO #5
The unstoppable Chinese giant has been running roughshod over everyone that has stepped into the ring with him. In just 4 years, the former Olympic champion has accumulated 20 victories, 16 of them via KO, as well as the WBO Oriental title. His next confirmed opponent will be former WBA International champion & world title contender Alexander Ustinov (34-2), on November 24, in Monaco.
Apinan Sakkreerin (12-0): IBF #10
The current IBF Asia & Pan Pacific champion, has knocked out Jason Egera as well as Rusmin Kie Raha this year.
-Daud Yordan (38-3): WBO #2 / WBA #2
Since entering the Lightweight rankings in 2013, Yordan has won all 8 of his fights, including numerous titles. His latest success came this April, when he stopped undefeated Russian prospect Pavel Malikov to become the WBO Intercontinental champion. Standing amongst the top of his division, he’s now facing former World champion Anthony Crolla (33-6) on November 10, in Manchester, for a chance at the WBA World title.
-Mercito Gesta (32-2): WBO #7
After unsuccessfully challenging Jorge Linares for the WBA World championship earlier this year, Gesta defeated Robert Manzanarez for the vacant WBO-NABO title.
-Can Xu (15-2): WBA #2 / WBC #10
The former Super Featherweight, now the reigning Featherweight WBA International champion, has defeated Filipino champion Jelbirt Gomera as well as Mexican champion Enrique Bernache, both in 2018. There were talks of him facing Jesus Rojas for the WBA World title this December, before the latter lost his belt to Joseph Diaz (27-1). Still ranked at the top of the WBA, we could be seeing the Chinese superstar getting a crack at the gold, sooner or later.
-Genesis Servania (32-1): WBO #1 / WBA #3 / IBF #5 / WBC #12
Servania has knocked out all of his opponents, since losing to WBO World champion Oscar Valder in 2017, including World title contender Carlos Carlson in September. He’s now looking for another shot at a World championship, either at Featherweight or at Super Bantamweight. There are rumors of him challenging Isaac Dogboe (20-0) next year.
-Mark Magsayo (18-0): WBC #1 / WBO #5
The reigning WBO International champion is the number 1 contender for Gary Russell’s World title. However, since the WBC has ordered Russell Jr. vs. Leo Santa Cruz, it’s safe to say that this fight won’t happen anytime soon. Maybe at this point, the best option for Magsayo will be to focus on the WBO World title, which has been held by Oscar Valdez (24-0) since 2016.
-Richard Pumicpic (21-8): WBO #8
The WBO Asia Pacific champion already marked his first title defense earlier this year, when he took on Yoshimitsu Kimura. Now he returns to Japan again on November 25, to fight another undefeated prospect in Musashi Mori (7-0).
-Albert Pagara (30-1): WBO #5 / IBF #6 / WBC #18
Pagara stopped Laryea Gabriel Odoi this past June, to become the WBO Intercontinental champion. He will make his inaugural title defense against George Krampah (14-3) in the Philippines, on November 24.
-Tassana Sanpattan (48-0): WBC #2
“Petch Sor Chitpattana” was set to fight Rau'shee Warren (16-2) for the vacant WBC World championship but thus far no date has been set. It’s not guaranteed if the match will take place at this point.
-Nawaphon Kaikanha (42-1): WBC #9
Nawaphon earned a huge victory earlier this year when he stopped former IBF World Flyweight champion Amnat Ruenroeng in the third round. He then moved to Bantamweight where he won the WBC Asia title.
-Kenny Demecillo (14-4): IBF #3
Demecillo has fought only once this year, scoring a KO win over Vyacheslav Mirzaev in Russia. He is supposed to clash with former World champion Lee Haskins (35-4) in an IBF World title eliminator on November 17. It’s unclear if the bout will go on as planned.
-Michael Dasmarinas (28-2): IBF #4 / WBC #15
Dasmarinas knocked out former EBU European champion Karim Guerfi this April to gain the IBO “world” title. His latest fight against Manyo Plange came to a draw.
-Donnie Nietes (41-1): WBO #1 / WBC #6
The former 3 division world champion fought Aston Palicte for the vacant WBO world title, this past September, to a draw. Nietes will now be facing fellow 3 division world champion Kazuto Ioka (23-1) for the same vacant crown, on December 31st in Macau.
-Aston Palicte (24-2): WBO #2 / WBO #8
As mentioned above, Palicte and Nietes fought to a draw for the WBO championship. No news yet on what’s on the horizon for him. He will square off against Jose Martinez (20-0) in a WBO World title eliminator. The victor will fight the winner of Ioka/Nietes.
-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.
-Wenfeng Ge (11-0): WBO #9 / IBF #13 / WBC #25
In his first ever Flyweight bout, the undefeated Chinese prospect took the unanimous decision victory over Ivan Soriano as well as the vacant WBO International championship, this past August.
-Froilan Saludar (28-3): WBA #10
The former WBO Asia Pacific & Intercontinental title holder unsuccessfully challenged Sho Kimura in July for the World championship.
-Giemel Magramo (22-1): WBO #7 / WBC #9 / WBA #9 / IBF #10
The Filipino captured the vacant WBO Oriental title in March and successfully defended it on October 29, against Petchchorhae Kokietgym.
-Sirichai Thaiyen (51-4): WBA #8 / WBC #19
The former WBA interim World champion failed the recapture the crown this summer in Ukraine when he fought Artem Dalakian (17-0).
-Jayr Raquinel (10-1): IBF #7 / WBC #24
Earlier this year, Raquinel won the OPBF title from Keisuke Nakayama and in 2 months time, successfully marked his first title defense over Shun Kosaka. However, he failed to capture the vacant WBC Silver championship, when he squared off with Chinese rising star Wulan Tuolehazi, in September.
-Komgrich Nantapech (24-5): IBF #3
The reigning IBF Pan Pacific champion was set to face Japanese champion Masayuki Kuroda (30-7) in an IBF world title eliminator bout, on November 21, but due to a sudden injury, he won’t be able to compete.
-Jonathan Taconing (28-3): WBC #1 / WBO #2 / WBA #3 / IBF #10
Taconing defended his WBC International championship for the second time, this past September, against one time world title challenger Vince Paras. The WBC has ordered a world title eliminator bout against undefeated former IBF World Minimumweight champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (13-0). The winner of that match will face Ken Shiro in 2019. It’s uncertain if that fight will take place or not, as of yet.
-Edward Heno (13-0): WBO #5 / WBC #6 / WBA #6 / IBF #7
Heno marked 2 successful title defenses of the OPBF championship, within 2018, over Jesse Espinas as well as former World champion Merlito Sabillo. The Filipino breakout star could be fighting for a World title, at some point next year.
-Christian Araneta (16-0): WBC #10 / WBA #10 / WBO #12
Araneta expanded his undefeated streak when he stopped former world title contender Jerry Tomogdan, in August, to win the vacant WBC Asia Silver championship. He has expressed his wish to face Chayaphon Moonsri (51-0) for the WBC World Minimumweight title.
-Jing Xiang (15-4): WBO #8 / WBC #11
2018 has been a quite successful year for Xiang as he, not only captured the vacant WBO Intercontinental title on January, but also earned a huge victory after defeating former World champion Merlito Sabillo, this past September, to become the WBC Silver champion.
-Rey Loreto (24-14): WBC #7
After a failed attempt to dethrone Thammanoon Niyomtrong last year, Loreto returned this past February and knocked out journeyman Arnold Garde.
-Milan Melindo (37-4): WBC #5
The former IBF World champion lost to the defending WBC World champion Ken Shiro this October, after enduring a massive beating for 7 rounds.
-Teeraphong Utaida (37-6): IBF #5
Since losing to Felix Alvarado last year, Utaida has won 3 fights in a row, including the IBF Pan Pacific title.
-Chaozhong Xiong (27-8): WBA #8 / WBC #15
Xiong tried to become a 2time World champion when he fought Thammanoon Niyomtrong in July, but it wasn’t meant to be. No news yet if this was his last match or not.
-Mark Anthony Barriga (9-0): IBF #1 / WBO #3 / WBA #9
The Filipino rising star earned another huge victory when he defeated 2time World title contender Gabriel Mendoza in May. The biggest fight of his young career will take place on December 1st as he goes up against Carlos Licona (13-0) for vacant IBF World Championship.
-Robert Paradero (17-0): WBO #1 / WBC #26
Paradero will be facing Wilfredo Mendez (11-1), on December 7 in Puerto Rico, in a WBO World title eliminator. The winner will be next in line to challenge Vic Saludar (18-3) for the gold in 2019.
-Panya Pradabsri (24-1): WBO #6 / WBC #12 / WBA #15
Since losing to Chaozhong Xiong in 2017, Pradabsri has amassed 6 wins this year, plus the OPBF Silver title.
-Rene Mark Cuarto (16-1): WBO #9 / WBC #27
Cuarto won his first championship in August after he fought Clyde Azarcon for the vacant WBO Oriental title.
-Pedro Taduran (12-2): IBF #9 / WBC #11
Taduran began 2018 very promising as he dropped former world title challenger Jerry Tomogdan in the fifth round, but couldn’t capitalize on that momentum in his World championship bout against Chayaphon Moonsri.
-Samuel Salva (15-0): IBF #8 / WBC #32
The Filipino prospect remained undefeated in 2018 as well, adding 3 more victories to his record.
*Interim World Champions NOT included.
**The focus was on South/East Asian countries.
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