2010-Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym retains
Thailand's Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym had held the "interim" WBA Super Bantamweight title back in 2005-2006 and then again 2009. Eventually he claimed the full version of the title in 2009, stopping Bernard Dunne in Dublin. His first defense saw him travel to Tokyo to face hard hitting Japanese challenger Satoshi Hosono, who was unbeaten at 16-0.
Poonsawat, a real world class fighter, was given problems by the hard nosed challenger, who marched forward through out, but did enough to retain the title with a majority decision. Sadly for the Thai he would only actually record one more successful defense, over-coming Shoji Kimura, before losing in October to Ryol Li Lee, in what was a real upset.
Sadly for the Thai his career would never these loft peaks again, retiring in 2012 with a record of 48-2 (33) following the chance discovery of a serious blood disorder ahead of a bout with Guillermo Rigondeaux. The bout was cancelled with the Cuban and Poonsawat retired. For Hosono things were disappointing, he would lose in another world title fight to Celestino Caballero, suffer a technical draw with Chris John and then suffer late career losses to Jonathan Victor Barros and Reiya Abe, to fall to 33-4-1 (22).
2010-Takashi Uchiyama becomes king!
On the same card as the Poonsawat Vs Hosono bout we saw Takashi Uchiyama announce himself on the world stage, with a 12th round KO win against Juan Carlos Salgado for the WBA Super Featherweight title.
Salgado was looking to make his first defense following a shock win over Jorge Linares in October 2009. He was however unable to over-come "KO Dynamite", who was in the lead before closing the show in the final round. The win began a reign of terror from Uchiyama which lasted until he was upset by Jezreel Corrales in 2016. A second loss to Corrales sent Uchiyama into retirement with a record of 24-2-1 (20).
During his reign Uchiyama managed an impressive 11 title defenses, with 9 TKO's, including wins over Takashi Miura, Jorge Solis, Daiki Kaneko and Jomthong Chuwatana. He has now opened up his own boxing gym, the KOD Lab Boxing Gym.
2002-Veeraphol Sahaprom retains
When we talk about Thai greats it's impossible not to talk about Veeraphol Sahaprom, who in his prime was truly feared. He was a sensation fighter with spiteful power, a solid jab and very under-rated skills.He would win the WBC Super Flyweight title in just his 4th bout and despite having a short reign was still regarded as a major player. He moved up to Bantamweight soon after losing the Super Flyweight title and began his real reign of terror, at Bantamweight.
Sahaprom took the WBC Bantamweight title from Japanese star Joichiro Tatsuyoshi in December 1998 and made 14 defenses of the belt. The 8th of those came on this day in 2002, when he faced off with Mexican tough guy Sergio Perez. Perez was an undeserving challenger, with a 23-9 (16) record but has never been stopped and showed his toughness in going 12 rounds with Sahaprom, in what was a wide decision loss. Notably Perez wouldn't be stopped until 2012, when Abner Cotto stopped him in 7 rounds and he then suffered stoppages in his final 2 bouts.
Sahaprom's reign would continue until April 2005, when he lost a close decision to Hozumi Hasegawa in Japan. A rematch with Hasegawa saw Sahaprom being stopped. He would never reclaim a world title but he would continue on until 2010 when he retired with a record of 66-4-2 (46).
1966-Yoshinori Nishizawa's birthday
We're also saying happy birthday to Japanese veteran Yoshinori Nishizawa, who had a very interesting career as a fighter before linking up with the Ohashi gym recently as a trainer. Nishizawa made his debut back in 1986 and would fight for the last time as a professional in 2011, he career spanned more than 25 years and saw him fighting well into his 40's.
In his pomp Nishizawa won the Japanese Middleweight title, in 1997, and then won the OPBF Super Middleweight title, in 1999, and again in 2001. Although a relative unknown in the West Nishizawa would challenge the WBA Super Middleweight champion Anthony Mundine and WBC champion Markus Beyer, both in 2004, before moving up in weight to claim the OPBF Light Heavyweight title at the age of 40! From there his career meandered for a few years before he retired with a record of 31-21-6 (19)
Last year he joined the training team at the Ohashi Gym and is now a key figure there bringing on the next general of talent through one of the top gyms in Japan. With his experience, know how and proven ability to perform in older age he is an ideal mentor to the fighters at the Ohashi gym, along with Hideyuki Ohashi himself, and Koji Matsumoto.