On this day...
1969-Chartchai Chionoi (48-11-2, 31) Vs Efren Torres (58-5-1, 38) II
It's rare we see trilogies between Thai and Mexican fighter but we had a bloody, brutal, violent trilogy between Chartchai Chionoi and Efren Torres in a little over 2 years, from 1968 and 1970. The first of the bouts had seen Chionoi score his third defense of the WBC Flyweight title, sadly the first rematch saw Torres avenge the loss, stopping the Thai with a badly swollen left eye. The rubber match would go the way of the Thai who would go on to reclaim the title before later claiming the WBA belt.
2002-Yo Sam Choi (23-1, 12) Vs Shingo Yamaguchi (11-2-1, 5)
Korean legend Yo Sam Choi didn't venture out of his homeland often, only leaving for two bouts in Japan. His second bout saw him leaving Korea to defend the WBC Light Flyweight title against Japanese challenger Shingo Yamaguchi. This was Choi's third defense of the title, which he retained with a 10th round stoppage over the brave Yamaguchi. Sadly Yamaguchi would lose the title to Jorge Arce in his next fight. Yamaguchi would go on to have two more world title bouts, losing to Takefumi Sakata and Daisuke Naito later in his career.
2004-Konosuke Tomiyama (0-0) Vs Tsuyoshi Takizawa (0-1)
Charismatic Japanese fighter Konosuke Tomiyama won't go down in the history books as anyone amazing, or a special fighter but his lively personality was always enjoyable, and he did manage to give Nobuo Nashiro a real scare in a WBA world title bout. He actually debuted on this day, stopping Tsuyoshi Takizawa in the 4th round at the Korakuen Hall.
On this day...
1960-Fighting Harada (0-0) Vs Isami Masui (0-0)
Japanese legend Fighting Harada debuted back on this day in 1960, beating fellow debutant Isami Masui in 4 rounds. For Masui this is the sole recorded bout of his, for Harada however this is was the first step of a legendary career that saw him going 55-7 (22), winning world titles at Flyweight and Bantamweight, and score wins over fellow legends like Pone Kingpetch, Eder Jofre, Hiroyuki Ebihara and Bernardo Caraballo.
1964-Satoshi Shingaki's birthday
Japan's Satoshi Shingaki will never go down as one of the nation's legends, but was a very notable fighter in the 1980's due to his connection with the renegade IBF Japan, leaving the JBC to work with the upstart organisation. He would be the first IBF champion, winning the IBF Bantamweight title in 1984, well before the JBC even recognised the IBF. Shingaki's career, which ended in 1990 saw him going 11-3-1 (8) but he played a notable, yet often forgot, part in the rarely remembered IBF Japan movement.
Whilst a number of days in February have lacked things of note that certainly can't be said for February 19th which has given us numerous notable bouts, including several big Japanese female cards.
2015-Naoko Shibata vs Saemi Hanagata
Momo Koseki v Aisah Alico
A female double header in Tokyo saw Naoko Shibata and Momo Koseki retaining their titles in all Japanese world title bouts at the Korakuen Hall.
2012-Ayaka Miyao Vs Masae Akitaya
Mari Ando Vs Maria del Refugio Jimenez Cruz
Etsuko Tada Vs Maria Salinas
Another female title double header came in 2012 and, again, saw ladies stealing the show, this time in Osaka, with Tada and Ando retaining their WBA titles and Miyao becoming the WBA Atomweight mandatory challenger.
2000-Artur Grigorian vs Sandro Casamonica
Uzbek fighter Artur Grigorian held the WBO Lightweight title for close to 8 years, from 1996 to 2004. During that time he made 17 defenses, the 10th of which came n this day in 2000, when he beat Italian challenger Sandro Casamonica in 9 rounds. The talented Grigorian dropped Sasamonica in the 8th round before scoring the stoppage the following round.
1989-Sung Kil Moon vs Chiaki Kobayashi
The then WBA Bantamweight champion Sung Kil Moon made his second defense as he stopped Chiaki Kobayashi in the 5th round. Moon would lose the title 5 months later, in a return bout with Khaokor Galaxy, who he had beaten for the title in 1988. Moon would later prove to be a phenomenal fighter at Super Flyweight, winning the WBC Super Flyweight title in 1990 and defending it 9 times. Sadly this would be Kobayashi's final career bout, with the Japanese fighter never returning to the ring.
February 18th hasn't been a huge day in Asian boxing but there has been a few notable events:
1990-Jung Il Byun's debut
Korean fighter Jung Il Byun only had a short professional career. It began on this day in 1990 and ended less than 5 years later. Despite how short it was he would fight 12 bouts as a professional, including 4 world title bouts. He would win the WBC Bantamweight title in his 9th bout, beating Victor Rabanales, and make a single defenses before suffering back to back losses to Yasuei Yakushiji.
His debut saw him beating Noel Cornelio with an 8 round decision and he was fast tracked from there winning a world title just over 3 years later before retiring with a record of 10-2 (4).
1962-Pero Adigue Jr's debut
Another notable debut on this day came way back in 1962 when Filipino fighter Pedro Adigue Jr began his professional career, fighting to a draw with Rod Doligon. Adigue's career began in 1962 and ended in 1977. Adigue won OPBF titles at 135lbs and 140lbs but would be best known for winning the WBC Light Welterweight title way back in 1968. During his career he would go 37-21-7 (15), beating the likes of Carl Penalosa, Rene Barrientos, Adolph Pruitt, Koichi Wajima and Lion Furuyama.
Although an accomplished fighter Adigue did suffer numerous notable losses, coming up short against the likes Yoshiaki Numata, Bruno Acari, Oscar Alvarado, Eddie Perkins, Nicolino Locche and Antonio Cervantes.
1959-Kenji Yonekura Vs Pascual Perez I
One of the most notable bouts to have taken place on this day came back in 1959 when former amateur stand out Kenji Yonekura took on Flyweight champion Pascual Perez in their first bout. The contest, a non-title bout at the Nihon University Auditorium, saw Yonekura come up short, but do enough to earn a rematch with Perez later in the year. Yonekura would again come up short but show that he could hang with world class fighters. The following year Yonekura would get another world title fight, facing off with Bantamweight king Jose Becerra, though lost a split decision.
As a fighter Kenji Yonekura went 13-10-1 (1) but he would go on to set up the Yonekura gym, which would become a major gym in Japan. It would develop talents like Hideyuki Ohashi, Kuniaki Shibata, Guts Ishimatsu, Shigeo Nakajima and Hiroshi Kawashima, showing just how important he was, and still us, to the Japanese boxing scene.
February 17th has been a notable day for Asian Boxing, with 2001 in particular holding a special place in boxing it hosted the amazing bout between Takanori Hatakeyama, the then WBA Lightweight champion, and Japanese based American born fighter Rick Yoshimura, born Frederick Roberts.
Hatakeyama had taken the title from Gilberto Serrano and was making his first defense against. Yoshimura on the other hand had made 22 defenses of the Japanese title before getting this shot at the WBA belt. The contest ended up being a 12 round slog, with Yoshimura trying to box, using his footwork to fight at range whilst Hatakeyama was relentlessly coming forward , making for a great fight.
The bout would be one of the hidden classics of the early 00's with Hatakeyama narrowly retaining his title, thanks to a draw.
Sadly neither man would ever quite be the same following this war, and neither would win a bout afterwards. Yoshimura would losing his following 2 bouts, before retiring and eventually setting up a gym. Hatakeyama on the other hand would lose the title just 5 months later, losing a decision to Julien Lorcy, before retiring and also setting up a gym of his own with Shinji Takehara.
Also on the date:
1980-Tae Shik Kim Vs Luis Ibarra
1976-Koichi Wajima Vs Jae Doo Yuh
There's not been many notable bouts in Asian Boxing falling on February 16th, there's no clear reason as to why there's so few fights on this day, but we have had a few notable ones in the last 30 years or so.
The highest profile one came in 2006 when Thai great Ponsaklek Wonjongkam recorded his 13th defense of the WBC Flyweight title, beating Gilbero Keb Baas over 12 rounds. By this point Wonjongkam had been a champion for close to 5 years and was well established as one of the great Flyweight champions of his era. Wonjongkam was 59-2 (30) entering this bout and was 28. Baas was 26-12-1 (15), also 28.
Notably Baas would go on to win the WBC Light Flyweight title in 2010 before retiring in 2012 with a record of 35-22-4 (22). Wonjongkam would run up a professional record of 91-5-2 (47), with his last fight coming in 2018 and would become a 2-time champion with a stellar record at the top level.
Other notable bouts for this date:
2004-Yota Sato's professional debut
1995-Kozo Ishii's professional debut
February 15th has given us a number of notable bouts through history, with fighters from across Asia being involved in them. One of the most notable came in 1991 when Muangchai Kittikasem and Sot Chitalada faced off for the first time, in a rather rare all-Thai world title bout.
Coming into this bout Chitalada was the WBC Flyweight champion. He had won the title for the second time in 1989, avenging his 1988 loss to Yong Kang Kim, and had made 4 defenses. He was boasting a record of 23-2-1 (14), with both of his losses being avenged. Kittikasem, the challenger, was 13-1 (9), he had previously held the IBF Light Flyweight title before moving up in weight to challenging.
This bout would see Chitalada being broken down in 6 rounds by Kittikasem, who dropped him in rounds 1 and 4 before forcing the stoppage.
The two men would have a rematch the following year, with Chitalada being broken down in 9 rounds that time around before announcing his retirement, walking away from the sport with a 26-4-1 (16) record. Kittikasem on the other hand would lose the title in 1993 then fight occasionally, with his last bout coming in 1999. He retired following a loss to Shigeru Nakazato, with a record of 25-4 (17).
Also on this date
1997-Sirimongkol Singwancha Vs Jesus Sarabia
1986-Elly Pical Vs Cesar Polanco
1985 - Hwan Kil Yuh Vs Lester Eillis
We'll be honest, our research has turned up very, very little of note having happened on February 14th, with no major bouts popping up on the date from our search. Sadly that has left us with only 4 events worthy of note.
In 2005 it was the day that Ryuichi Funai made his professional debut, and he is now on the verge of a world title fight.
Just a year earlier, Filipino fighter Bernabe Concepcion made his professional debut, before he went on to fight for a world title.
Exactly 18 years earlier Hong Kong's Raymond Poon KaiChing was born. Although a prospect the 22 year old is currently the brightest hope in Hong Kong following the professional retirement of Rex Tso.
Way back in 1957 there was another notable birthday, this time that of the Bad Boy from Dadiangas, Rolando Navarrete. Of the men mentioned here he is by far the most notable having won the WBC Super Featherweight title in 1981, bating Carnelius Boza Edwards, before losing the belt the following year to Rafael Limon.
If anyone can come up with any better suggests please leave them in the comments!
There has been various notable Asian Boxing events on February 13th over the years. Among those is 1983 bout for the WBA Welterweight title, when unbeaten fighters collided at the Tarrant Co Convention Center, in Fort Worth.
In one corner was unbeaten Korean Jun Suk Hwang, a 21 year old with a record of 21-0 (12) whilst in the other corner was former standout Donald Curry. Hwang had claimed the Korean and OPBF Welterweight titles in his 21 bouts, but had never previously fought outside of Korea prior to challenging Curry. Curry on the other hand was 15-0 (12), he had been one of the greatest amateurs of all time, reportedly running up over 400 wins. Curry was tipped to be a huge American star and this was set to be his first world title bout.
The "Lone Star Cobra" mostly dominated, but struggled at times with the Korean, who dropped Curry in round 7. Despite the issues that Hwang did occasionally give him Curry was the clear winner, using his sharp punching and fantastic skills to take a unanimous decision, with wide scores.
Whilst Curry's career was a success, it did fall a long way short of expectations. He would be a 2-weight champion and bold the WBA, WBC and IBF Welterweight titles but went 9-5 (7) in world title bouts retiring for good in 1997 with a 34-6 record. Hwang on the other hand would run up a 42-5 (29) record, but would fail to win a world title, losing to Gilbert Dele in a WBA Light Middleweight title fight in 1991, his only other world title shot.
Also on this date:
2010-Ciso Morales Vs Fernando Montiel - WBO Bantamweight title fight
Gerry Penalosa Vs Eric Morel - WBO "interim" Bantamweight title fight
1977- Dong Kyun Yum vs Jose Cervantes - WBC Super Bantamweight title fight
Today we have no Korean sensations mixing it up at the world level, other than the occasional female fighter like Hyun Mi Choi. Back on this day in 1989 though we saw one of the all time greats in action, as Myung Woo Yuh, the then WBA Light Flyweight champion, faced off with Japanese challenger Katsumi Komiyama at the Chungbok Gymnasium in Chongju.
The unbeaten Yuh was making his 11th defense of the title, that he had won in December 1985. By this point he was 29-0 (10), reaching his physical prime, at the age of 25, and really impressing in his reign. Komiyama on the other hand was a 23 year old, with a record of 12-2-5 (3). He hadn't scored a big win by this point, but had gone unbeaten in 3 bouts in the US and was coming in to this bout just 7 months removed from a good win over Thai champion Putt Ohyuthanakorn.
Sadly for the challenger he found himself up against one of the all time great Light Flyweights, and found there was a huge gulf between himself and Yuh. Komiyama had travelled to win, and had given things a good effort, forcing Yuh back at times in what was certainly a credible fight from the Japanese fighter. In the end however Yuh would break Komiyama's resistence, forcing the Japanese fighter to be saved in the 10th round.
Yuh's reign would continue until 1991, when he lost to Hiroki Ioka, but a win in a rematch against Ioka would see Yuh become a 2-time champion. He would make a single defense in his second reign before retiring with a record of 38-1 (14). Komiyama on the other hand would struggle to rebuild and retire with a record of 16-9-6 (4), failing in 4 attempts to win a Japanese national title.
Also on this date:
2016-Pungluang Sor Singyu Vs Jetro Pabustan - WBO Bantamweight title fight
1985-Hideyuki Ohashi's debut
1935-Pong Kingpetch's birthday