Some days are busy, this coming Sunday is one such day with a host of bouts through out Asia, even if they aren't the biggest fights of the year.
The most interesting of the numerous Asian shows today will come from the Philippines where we see one of the sport's most exciting little men in action.
The aforementioned little man is Filipino slugger Denver Cuello (34-5-6, 22) who will be fighting against experienced Indonesian journeyman Samuel Tehuayo (18-27-2, 3) in a 10 round bout. This will be Cuello's second bout in quick succession this year having lost more than a year of his career to inactivity following a nasty arm injury that he suffered in a WBC world title fight in 2013 against Xiong Zhao Zhong. As for Tehuayo, AKA Sammy Hagler, this will be his second fight this month following a loss to Pigmy Kokietgym back on November 14th.
The co-feature bout on this show is also a notable one as former WBC Flyweight champion Sonny Boy Jaro (37-13-5, 27) battles against Arjet Caballes (6-31-5, 3) in another complete and utter mismatch.
An interesting under-card bout here will see the unbeaten Kyota Otsuka (4-0, 2) fighting against the much more experienced Ricky Oyan (4-22-2, 2). On paper this is a a good step up for Otsuka but it's a step up he should manage with out too many problems.
In Ishikawa, on one of the three Japanese shows, we see a number of bouts featuring international fighters.
The main event will feature promising Filipino Daryl Basadre (13-1-1, 9) fighting against unbeaten Thai Yodsingdaeng Jor Chaijinda (6-0, 4) in what looks to be a genuinely interesting contest for the WBC Youth Bantamweight. Basadre is unbeaten since being stopped by Suriyan Sor Rungvisai back in September 2013 and has since ran up 4 wins, 3 by stoppage, as he's redeveloped his confidence. Yodsingdaeng is a bit of a mystery Thai though hopefully will prove to be better than some other Thai's we've seen fighting on the road recently.
The show will also feature two other bouts between a Filipinos and Thais. One will see Mark Gil Melligen (20-4-1, 11) battling against a Thai opponent, though sadly one we haven't the name of. The other will see the very exciting and promising Neil John Tabanao (9-0, 6) fighting against the win-less Tienchai Sor Kanitsorn (0-3). We suspect we'll see the Filipino's going 3-0 here.
The 5 other bouts on this card will see Japanese fighters fighting against Chinese fighters. The most notable of these bouts is a 6 rounder between Yukiya Hanabusa (6-2-2, 1) battle against Chinese novice Xu Yuan Cai (0-1).
Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines
A second Filipino card is going to be held in Zamboanga and will be headlined by a bout between the unbeaten and promising Dexter Alimento (6-0, 4) and the limited but experienced Jherom Tuyor (6-19-2, 3) in what we suspect will be a relatively straight forward win for the unbeaten man.
A second Japanese show comes from Tochigi and is only a small one featuring a total of 7 bouts, though only 2 are worth noting.
The main event here is a 10 round featuring OPBF ranked Super Featherweight contender Yoshitomo Watanabe (5-1, 4). The 22 year old Japanese fighter will be fighting against a Thai opponent though unfortunately we don't have any information about the Thai in this bout.
In the chief support bout fans will get an 8 rounder between Yuki Furuya (6-6, 2) and Masahide Shinabe (6-11-2, 3). This isn't a great bout on paper but it should give the fans something to enjoy before the main event.
In Kagoshima we get the weakest of the three Japanese cards. The show will also feature 7 bouts and it's most notable bouts are both relatively poor.
One of the co-features will see Naoya Haruguchi (5-5, 2) fighting against Takeshi Nakayama (3-6-2, 1) whilst the other will see Tomohiro Nagakari (6-2, 1) battling against Takuya Taniguchi (4-5-1, 1). Both of these bouts are 6 rounders and sadly it does leave us feeling under-whelmed with nothing on the show being particularly interesting.
In China there is a small show as well, with yet more Chinese fighters in action. That card, from Wuhan, appears to have a number of novices in action with no real stand out bout.
One of those novices is Wang Kun (1-1, 1) who will be battling against limited Georgian Giorgi Gochishvili (3-4-2, 1) in an interesting 8 rounder. Kun fought both of his bouts in 2012 and will be returning to the ring after a notable break. Gochishvili started his career 3-0 though has failed to record a win in his last 6 bouts and suspect that run will be continue here.
The other bout will see A Mu (0-0) making his debut. The debuting Chinese fighter will be in action against Georgian visitor Renat Samedovi (10-11-1, 3). We suspect that Mu will be given a good test here and this isn't a gimme as we would usually see from a debutant.
Eastern Cape, South Africa
We get two more Asian fighters in action in South Africa as we get a pair of IBO title fights, strange the Asian's on this show have actually fought each other in the past.
One of the fighters is is the heavy handed Filipino hopeful Marbon Bodiongan (11-1-2, 9) who will be fighting against Xolani Mcotheli (10-1, 8) in a bout for the IBO Super Featherweight title. This is a great bout on paper and one we're excited by given that both guys are talented and both guys appear to have real power.
The other Asian on this show is another Filipino, the talented and very promising Michael Dasmarinas (18-1, 11) challenging for the IBO Super Flyweight title against Lwandile Sityatha (17-3-1, 7). Dasmarinas was actually stopped by Bodiongan back in April 2012 though has since ran off 15 straight wins, including an impressive one on the road against Hayato Kimura in Japan. Sityatha comes into this bout following a very narrow win over Edrin Dapudong and we suspect Dasmarinas has been given a heads up about how the South African fighters ahead of this coming contest.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
This Saturday isn't one of the biggest in Asian boxing but it's still likely to be an interesting day of fighters with several notable names in action.
The biggest bout of the weekend, at least for us, comes from the USA as IBF Featherweight champion Evgeny Gradovich (19-0, 9) defends his world title for the 4th time. Gradovich, seen by some as the “weak link” at Featherweight will be defending his belt against fellow unbeaten fighter Jayson Velez (22-0, 16) of Puerto Rico. The bout looks like a really interesting one as both men are trying to prove they they are world class and remain unbeaten though will know this is likely to be the toughest bout of their career so far.
Metro Manila, Philippines
In the Philippines we get a small but notably Johnny Elorde promotions show in Metro Manila.
The main event here will see Juan Martin Elorde (16-1-1, 7) defending his WBO Asia Pacific Super Featherweight title against Japan's Hirotsugu Yamamoto (16-10-2, 2). For Elorde this will be the second defence of his title though we do wonder just how far he will really be able to go, we are also unsure just how Yamamoto has qualified for this title fight and he shouldn't give much of a challenge to Elorde.
A second notable fight here will see Juan Miguel Elorde (16-1, 8) fight against a yet to be named opponent. Sadly when we have a "TBA" a few days before the fight we don't expect to see a good opponent and that's likely to be the case here.
Others on this card include Flyweight prospect Giemel Magramo (11-0, 8), who battles the over-matched Ruther Del Castillo (9-20-8, 2) in a 10 round contest, and and the light punching Jeffrey Francisco (10-0-1) who fights Jestoni Autida (5-2, 2) in the most interesting of the bouts scheduled for 8 rounds.
In Australia we will see a trio of Asian's in action, including one in the main event.
On the undercard will see Thailand's win-less Arnon Yuchareon (0-7) fighting against Australian based Brit Darren Askew (12-6-1, 4). The fight is likely to be Arnon's 8th straight loss however he has proven to be very competitive in his last 2 bouts an may well upset Askew who has has undergone a career revival since heading down under where his is now 6-0-1. Another Thai on the under-card is Pramool Boonpok (1-8-1) who will be fighting against Liam Hutchinson (8-1, 4) in what looks to be another clear mismatch against the Thai fighter.
In the main event Indonesian journeyman John Bajawa (12-7, 6) will be in action against Brad Hore (3-1). For Hore this will be first bout in over a year and some will view this as a must win for the 2-time Olympian. Bajawa, for those who recognise his name, has been in with some interesting fighters in recent years including Ryo Matsumoto, who stopped him inside a round, Melvin Gumban, who stopped him in 7, Yushi Tanaka, who stopped him in 8, and most recently Rex Tso who stopped him in 5. It's fair to say Hore will be favoured massively here.
This Friday is a very busy day in Asian boxing with numerous former world champions in action and several really interesting bouts.
The first of the former world champions in action today is former WBC Super Flyweight world champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (29-4-1, 26). The heavy handed Thai will be defending his regional WBC Asian Boxing Council Super Flyweight title against Filipino Bobby Concepcion (11-5-1, 5) in what we suspect will prove to be a disappointingly one sided mismatch. Concepcion comes into this bout on the back of successive stoppage losses and will not be expected to even test the Thai puncher who has scored wins in each of the last two months.
In Tokyo we get a really interesting show, albeit one that is more interesting for those interested in Japanese domestic and Oriental scenes.
The main event promising to be thrilling as the always entertaining Shuhei Tsuchiya (16-3, 14) battles against Japanese based Filipino Ricky Sismundo (26-8-1, 12). The bout pits two Japanese ranked Lightweights against each other with both hoping to recapture some form after recent losses. Tsuchiya enters this bout 2-3 in his last 5 bouts with the most recent losses being stoppages to Leonardo Zappvigna, who stopped him in a bloody 10 round affair, and Masayoshi Nakatani, who dominated him in a 3-round break out win for the Ioka youngster. Sismundo lost his last bout, also to Nakatni, by decision and will know that a win here could open up title opportunities for him in 2015. This is a fantastic bout and should be thrilling for as long as it lasts.
In a second bout between Japanese and Filipino fighters fan will see #2 ranked Japanese Super Featherweight Yuya Sugizaki (19-9-1, 6) battle against heavy handed but limited Filipino slugger Gabriel Royo (9-10-2, 8). This should be an easy win for Sugizaki though Royo's power may keep this interesting early on.
Another bout on this card that has caught out eye will see the OPBF and Japanese Yuta Nakagawa (13-4-1, 8) risking his rankings against the heavy hitting Yuta Saito (7-4-2, 6). Saito was the 2012 All Japan Rookie of the Year MVP though has really failed to shine in his last two bouts, if he catches Nakagawa this could be an interesting fight however Nakagawa should win given his ability and experience.
A fourth bout from this show that we're interested in is a 6 rounder that features the touted Koki Koshikawa (2-0, 1). Koshikawa will be fighting against Ryoji Miyagi (7-4-1, 4) in a clear step up for the Celes gym prospect. Miyagi comes into this bout with no real form having lost his last 2 bouts, including a stoppage to current Japanese Light Welterweight champion Hiroki Okada, however he does have an edge in experience and could well test the promising youngster, who turns 24 just days before this fight.
In the most interesting of two separate Russian cards we will see several notable fighters including two former world champions in the main event. Sadly however a number of these bouts do feel like mismatches.
The biggest mismatch is in the main event, where recent WBO Light Welterweight champion Ruslan Provodnikov (23-3, 16) battles against Mexican veteran Jose Luis Castillo (66-12-1, 57). In his prime Castillo would have been a perfect opponent to see Provodnikov fight, in fact that would likely have been a classic. Sadly Castillo is now almost a decade past his prime and aged 40 he's unlikely to do much more than be a human puncher here for the “Siberian Rocky”.
In a second 12 rounder fans will see the light hitting but talented Andrey Klimov (18-1, 9) defending his WBO Inter-Continental Super Featherweight title against Mexican visitor Gabino Cota (16-2-1, 14). We suspect that Klimov will win this as Cota has a very padded record, though with 14 stoppages in 19 bouts he may have genuine power that could make this interesting, though it is doubtful.
A third 12 rounder on this show sees the exciting Sergey Lipinets (4-0, 3) going for his first professional title. Lipinets will be hoping to claim the WBO Asia Pacific Welterweight title as he battles against Filipino Ernie Sanchez (14-5-1, 5) in what looks to be an opportunity to let Lipinets into the world WBO world rankings. We like the Russian and we like that he's being fast tracked and in all honesty we can't see anything but a Lipinets win here.
At Cruiserweight we see another former world champion in actual as Cuban veteran Juan Carlos Gomez (55-3-0-1, 20) attempts to end the KO streak of Russian puncher Dmitry Kudryashov (15-0, 15). On paper this is a step up for the Russian though if he wins in style there is little doubt that he'll be moved towards a world title bout in 2015. Gomez is a long way removed from his prime but he's on a nice run of 6 straight wins and knows a win here will move back into the world rankings. We doubt the win is all Kudryashov wants here and he'll be seeking a stoppage to keep his great run going.
A second Cruiserweight bout here will see Rakhim Chakhkiev (20-1, 15) battling against the heavy handed Jackson Junior (15-1, 13) in what looks like a genuinely exciting bout for the Russian ahead of possible world title bout in 2015.
One other notable name down for this show is Olympic champion Egor Mekhontsev (6-0, 6) who will be in his 7th bout of the year. We want to see the Mekhontsev step up now as he's now 30 years old and hasn't got time to waste on many more mismatches, especially given his amateur pedigree, power and ability. Sadly however he is only fighting against Joey Vegas (17-9-1, 10) and this shouldn't be difficult at all for the talented Russian.
On a second Russian show we have a few interesting, though lower level, bouts.
The most interesting bout here comes at Cruiserweight as the promising Yury Kashinsky (4-0, 4) battles against Yuriy Barashian (27-7, 18) in a clear step up for Kashinsky who could become yet another Russian name in the Cruiserweight rankings.
A second notable bout here will see PABA Light Middleweight champion Pavel Mamontov (9-1-2, 2) defending his title against Argentinian fighter Oscar Roberto Medina (24-6-2, 9). We're not big on Mamontov and wouldn't be surprised to see him losing sometime soon, but it's unlikely to be here.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Cotabato del Sur, Philippines
In the Philippines this coming Thursday we get a small card that is easy to over-look though does feature one or two interesting lower level fighters.
Possibly the most interesting prospect on the card is the heavy handed Super Flyweight hopeful Raymart Gaballo (5-0, 5). Gaballo, an 18 year with real promise, will be expected to over-come the win-less Rodel Garde (0-10-1) though we hope to see if Gaballo's power is legitimate or not and this should prove to be a very good test for the youngster given that Garde hasn't been stopped in more than 2 years.
Another unbeaten fighter that we are interested in seeing is Romeo Duno (2-0, 1) who will be in action against the limited but experienced Rowel Garcia (6-14-3, 1) in what is a good step up for the unbeaten Filipino Featherweight.
The main event will see Ronie Tanallon (4-1-1, 1) battling against the very experienced Jonathan Ricablanca (7-45-2, 1). On paper this looks like an easy one for Tanallon though in reality he's looked a very limited fighter recently and we can't rule out an upset here given the recent form of the 21 year old Tanallon.
It's great to have mid-week fights of note and this Wednesday we see an OPBF title fight in Tokyo, and better yet we can all see it courtesy of an official stream of the entire show over ustream by Japanese fighting legend Yoko Gushiken. For those who want to watch the show please visit the Gushiken ustream channel which is found here.
The main of the show sees OPBF Flyweight champion Koki Eto (15-3-1, 11) defending the belt he won in a thriller with Ardin Diale earlier this year. The Diale/Eto bout is one of the 2014 FOTY candidates though we wouldn't be shocked to see another thriller here as Eto battles against Filipino challenger Cris Paulino (14-1, 4) in what looks likely to be a really good fight. On paper Eto is the heavier handed and more proven fighter but his last few bouts have been total wars and it's going to be a huge ask for him to go to the well again considering the damage that he seems to be accumulating in recent contests. Paulino will be the under-dog but this bout is certainly not a foregone conclusion.
The chief support bout will see the highly experienced Hyobu Nakagama (17-11-4, 12) battle against fellow compatriot Yuki Fukumoto (16-9, 5). Neither of the fighters here are likely to win a title, even domestically, but should make for a good fight with each other. Nakagama is best known for his fights in Thailand, which have seen him lose to Oleydong Sithsamerchai and Pongsaklek Wonjongkam, though he does enter this bout as a ranked Japanese contender and knows that a loss here will cost him his ranking.
The second support bout will see recent Japanese title contender Taiki Eto (13-3, 10) battling against Filipino fighter Zoren Pama (6-11-3, 3). For Eto this will be his second bout since being beaten by Yohei Tobe in a Japanese Super Flyweight title fight whilst for Pama this will his first bout since suffering a technical decision defeat to former WBC world champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai. Eto is the more naturally talented of the two men here but Pama certainly seems like he could give Eto a hard fight if he's on form.
On the undercard there will be 6 more fights, include the debut of Robert Yamamoto (0-0) who we believe is a comedic actor who has had his voice featured in Pokémon games. We'll not guess on how good he is but we do need to admit that it's interesting debut all the same.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
The action just keeps coming this week and on Tuesday we get several interesting fighters in action in Japan and in Thailand.
Some of the Dangan card poor looking with no-name fighters and little that really will excite fans going in, others however are brilliant shows that have the 50-50 style fights that fans call for whilst also featuring some notable fighters. We have such show this Tuesday as we get Dangan 116, a show that really looks like a very early Christmas present.
In total the card will feature 8 bouts but several of those look really interesting.
The card will begin with a trio of 4 rounders, including a battle between two 2-0 fighters who are risking their unbeaten records against each other. The first “highlight” however comes in the shows first 6 round bout as the unbeaten Daishi Nagata (0-0-1) fights against Filipino Jeffrey Arienza (12-2-1, 7). On paper it looks like Nagata is being thrown to the wolves so to speak however the Japanese novice is very talented and fought to a draw on his debut with Takeshi Inoue in what was a bizarre all-debutant clash between two very promising fighters. Arienza will be fighting in Japan for the first time since being stopped by Masayuki Ito and he may find himself up against it here.
In a compelling 8 rounder the once touted Kenji Kubo (5-2-1, 2) will be battling the once beaten Ryoichi Tamura (2-1-1). As with Nagata it's fair to say that Tamura's record belies his skill level and we'd not be shocked if he over-came Kubo here, however we would suspect Kubo to the slight favourite in what looks like a potentially thrilling domestic contest between two men with real title aspirations, despite their records.
An interesting 8 rounder will see Takeshi Goda (7-2-1, 2) stepping up in class as he takes on former OPBF title challenger Valentine Hosokawa (17-4-3, 8) in what looks like a big step up for Goda. The 33 year old Hosokawa has gone 1-2 in his last 3 bouts, dating back more than 3 years, though did put up brave efforts in both of those losses, including an OPBF title fight loss to Min Wook Kim in South Korea.
Another really promising fighter on this card is the once beaten Yusaku Kuga (9-1-1, 6), who we are strongly tipping a future title holder. Kuga will be seeking his third successive stoppage of the year as he takes on the tough but limited Kenta Takahashi (10-8-3, 3). On paper this looks like a total mismatch but the key point to it is to compare Kuga's performance against Takahashi to those of recent title challengers Yuki Ogata, Gosuke Seki and Daisuke Yokoyama who all found Takahashi a very tough man to defeat. In some ways this is the typical “prospect Vs gatekeeper” bout that tells us a lot about the prospect and just how good he is, in this case we suspect Kuga is very good.
In the main event fans will see the unbeaten Masayuki Ito (15-0-1, 6) attempt to build on his recent win over Masao Nakamura as he battles against Filipino visitor Ryan Sermona (16-6, 9) in what looks to be a good bout for Ito even if it's not a forward step. Sermona comes into this bout on the back of successive technical decision losses to Corey McConnell and Shingo Eto though should prove to be a great test for Ito who needs to consider the step up to title level in 2015, if he wins here.
Nakhon Ratchasima , Thailand
In Thailand we've been told that the unbeaten, and world ranked, Teerachai Kratingdaenggym (27-0, 21) will be defending his PABA belt against Abraham Peralta (14-3, 12). Teerachai is ranked #5 by the WBA at 147lbs and it appears that the Thai's team is looking for a title fight of some sort before they take a real risk.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
After a huge weekend of fighters we see the action continuing with fights on a busy Monday that show cases two highly touted Japanese prospect with both expected to go far and reach heady heights in the next few years.
Arguably the best of the prospects in action is the much touted Light Flyweight Genki Hanai (2-0, 2) who appears to be one of the most prospects in the world. Hanai is the sort of fighter who gets in the ring, closes the distance and going on the offensive with brutal shots on the inside, as seen in his bout Against Thailand's Farung Porsuwangym. We suspect to see Hanai record his third stoppage in as many fighter here as he takes on Filipino visitor Crison Omayao (16-8-2, 4) who enters on the back of a 6 fight winless streak, including a 4th round KO defeat to Naoya Inoue a little more than 2 years ago, and an opening round defeat to Kosei Tanaka back in July. We love Omayao's bravery but his management need to consider his health as he can't keep taking beatings to Japanese prospects like this and end up with much of a future. Omayao does enter the bout ranked #9 at Minimumweight by the OPBF but it's a mystery he still has any sort of a ranking considering his current run which is unlikely to change until his management start to look after their fighter.
Aside from the main event on this Gifu show there is little of real value despite the show having several competitive looking 6 rounders on it.
The other standout prospect in action is in Osaka as Sho Nakazawa (4-0, 4) puts his unbeaten record on the line against OPBF ranked Filipino Super Bantamweight Jhunriel Ramonal (14-7-4, 7). This is a huge step up for Nakazawa though we don't think we've seen his true potential so far and if he can impress against Ramonal, as we suspect, he'll be moved towards a title fight in 2015. For those who haven't seen Nakazawa in action we have a couple of his fights, including his bout with Thailand's Charit Aomtanom.
Thankfully this show isn't just a show with just one notable bout, in fact this card features a trio of notable bouts. The second of that trio will be a potentially explosive encounter between the unbeaten Ryuto Kyoguchi (12-0-1, 9) and the heavy handed Shohei Fujimoto (9-3-3, 8). On paper we have to favour Kyoguchi, who's only "black mark" has come against the criminally under-rated Adones Aguelo, Fujimoto on the other hand has been stopped in all 3 of his losses.
In the main event fans will get a chance to see a battle between ranked contenders as Myung Ho Lee (16-4-1, 5), a former OPBF Flyweigth title challenger, battles against Takashi Omae (12-3-5, 1). Going in to this bout Lee enters as the #7 ranked Japanese Flyweight and the #10 ranked OPBF Flyweight whilst Omae is the #9 ranked Japanese Light Flyweight contender however Lee comes into this bout with a record of 1-3-1 in his last 5 bouts, including decisions losses to both Rocky Fuentes, in an OPBF title fight, and Edgar Sosa, in Mexico. Omae on the other hands is on an excellent unbeaten run of 8 bouts undefeated dating back more than 3 years.
Another show in Osaka seems just as interesting as the other one, in fact it this one actually has 4 bouts of note on it.
The main event here will see the heavy handed and exciting Koki Tyson Maebara (6-1-1, 6) battle against Thai visitor Petchsuriya Singwancha (12-8, 6) in a very interesting looking Middleweight bout. On paper this bout does look like a mismatch however the Thai has been in great form with 7 straight wins and actually enters as the WBC Youth Light Middleweight champion, though admittedly his title isn't on the line here.
In a Light Welterweight bout the heavy handed Jumbo Oda Nobunaga Shoten Petagine (8-2, 7) battles against the tough Shohei Kanemoto (9-8-1, 3) in what will be a second meeting between the two men. Back in April Kanemoto shocked Petagine with a majority decision win and it's fair to say the heavy handed Petagine will be seeking revenge here.
In a compelling Super Flyweight bout Cyborg Nawatedani (7-2-2, 3) will be battling against Shunji Nagata (10-11-2, 3) in a battle between ranked Japanese fighters. Nawatedani enters as the #10 ranked Flyweight whilst Nagata is ranked #13 and this bout really should help the winner move up the rankings. The 25 year old Nawatedani enters the bout unbeaten in 7 contests whilst Nagata has won his last 3. Although Nawatedani enters, rightfully, as the favourite it needs to be noted that Nagata has mixed with better company such as Myung Ho Lee and Tetsuya Hisada.
One final bout of note will see tough Filipino journeyman Marjohn Yap (19-11, 10) battle against Yuta Uetani (15-5-1, 7) in what looks set to be a “tough guy fight” between two very, very hard men. Between them they have suffered just 2 stoppage defeats and we suspect they won't be stopping each other here, in potentially the fight of the day.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
We have two shows this Sunday, local time, in Asia with one of those boxing a huge, monster show with one of the biggest names in the sport.
The biggest show of the day for almost every boxing fan is in Macau where Bob Arum's Top Rank Promotions returns for another huge show with some of the biggest names in Asian boxing and some genuinely compelling match ups.
The main event, as is often the case, is the main talking point as Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao (56-5-2, 38) risks his WBO Welterweight title against unbeaten American Chris Algieri (20-0, 8). For Pacquiao this will be the first defence of the title he regained when he defeated Timothy Bradley earleir this year, following a highly controversial loss to Bradley in 2012. As for Algieri this is a chance to continue an unlikely rise to stardom which is all the more shocking considering his lack of power. Pacquiao is of course one of the biggest names in world boxing and he is strongly favoured to retain his belt here though will need to over-come a notable size disadvantage to defeat the gutsy Algieri who really shocked many when he defeated Ruslan Provodnikov earlier this year.
In a second world title bout fans will see Thailand's experienced Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo (52-1, 33) attempt to claim the WBO Featherweight title from former amateur sensation Vasyl Lomachenko (2-1, 1). Lomachenko will be defending the belt he won earlier this year when he defeated the previously undefeated Gary Russell Jr and we suspect the talented Ukrainian will just have too much of everything for the experienced but limited Thai, who is of course best known for his loss to Chris John in his only previous world title bout. On paper this looks like a very odd contest given the huge gulf in professional experience but in reality the gulf in in skills and not experience.
A third world title bout on this show will see the controversial Jessie Vargas (25-0, 9) defending his WBA Light Welterweight title against former Lightweight champion Antonio DeMarco (31-3-1, 23). Vargas always appears to get the rub of the green in close fights and we wouldn't be shocked if he did the same here however this will be his first bout outside of the US and DeMarco is as gutsy as they come, as seen memorably in his bouts with Edwin Valero and Jorge Linares. This could be the most competitive contest on the show even if there is no Asian involved in the bout.
Yet another 12 rounder on this show will pit unbeaten fighters together as China's former amateur sensation-turn professional hopeful Zou Shiming (5-0, 1) risks his perfect record against Thailand's Kwanpichit OnesongchaiGym (27-0-2, 12). On paper this is one of the most compelling bouts on the show though we do suspect that Shiming will end up having a relatively easy time with his Thai opponent. Kwanpichit is world ranked by 3 of the big 4 organisations however we are in the "he's lucky to be unbeaten" camp having seen him narrowly escape an opening round defeat to Ben Mananquil in 2013 in a bout that could so easily have been stopped, and having narrowly taken a decision over the limited Jay-Ar Estremos earlier this year. Shiming might not be as good as advertised but he really should have more than enough to see off Kwanpichit who has feasted on smaller and less experienced men throughout his career so far. This is a must win for Shiming but if he loses then he isn't going to be good enough to ever win a world title.
On the under-card we have 4 bouts that we rather like the look of, for one reason or another. One of those will see the exciting Jerwin Ancajas (21-1-1, 13) take on the tough Fadhili Majiha (15-5-4, 7) in an 8 round bout. Ancajas impressed on his Macau debut s he blew away Inthanon Sithchamuang however he'll be expecting a much, much more competitive contest here with Majiha having proven his toughness in recent decison losses to Marlon Tapes and Pungluang Sor Singyu with the Punglunag bout being a surprisingly competitive one. In another under-card bout the always entertaining Rex Tso (14-0, 9) battles late fill in Espinos Sabu (11-2-1, 5) who has taken the fight on short notice after Kenta Okumura was forced to pull out with a hand injury. Tso is one of the sports more exciting fighters but unfortunately the popular Hong Kong fighter is somewhat limited and we suspect that he will find his level sooner rather than later. With that said, the tough Sabu is unlikely to be the one who does take the unbeaten record of Tso. It wouldn't be the biggest upset of the year if Sabu won but it would be somewhat a shock.
In 6 round action fans will see Chinese Light Heavyweight hopeful Qu Peng (6-0-1, 4) fight against Andrew Robinson (3-2, 2) in what looks like a step up for Peng. Also in another 6 rounder is the popular Kuok Kun Ng (5-0, 2) who faces fellow unbeaten Steve Attard (5-0-2, 2). We'll admit we like Ng, a lot, and view him as potentially the best of the emerging Chinese novices and if he's as good as we think he should come out on top here.
Their is only one show in Japan this Sunday as Hatanaka put on one of their “Soul Fighting” cards which will be shown, at some point, on CBC TV in Japan, which we've been informed is a regional channel so fans likely won't be able to find this one available for streams.
The main event here is a WBC Youth Bantamweight title bout as the unbeaten Yushi Tanaka (12-0-3, 8) looks to make the third defense of his belt. Unfortunately for fans, and Tanaka, this defense looks like a mismatch as the promising Japanese youngster battles against Indonesian visitor Rendi Stone (3-2-1, 2) in what looks like a huge step backwards for Tanaka following recent wins over Vergel Nebran and John Bajawa. Whilst Stone does enter this bout on a trio of wins we do wonder several things about him, including what his complete record looks like as we have real doubts that he is “only” 3-2-1 (2) considering his career began back in 2006.
In the chief support bout Shota Hayashi (23-5-1, 15), the #7 ranked Japanese Featherweight, will be fighting against experienced but limited Indonesian fighter Jason Butar Butar (16-14-1, 12). Hayashi will enter this bout on a 9 fight unbeaten streak, including 4 successive stoppages, and will know that if he can continue running up wins he can move towards a title fight of some kind. Butar Butar may be a recognisable name for some fans who may remember his loss, in Macau, to Harmonito Dela Torre, and sadly for the Indonesian fighter he is better known for his losses than his wins and is 0-8-1 on the road.
In Yemen we see a collision of unbeaten fighters as Muhammad Harazi (4-0, 1) battles against Hasan Dhubaibi (1-0, 1) in a bout for the Yemeni Minimumweight Title. The title will be defended by the 16 year old Harazi who won the belt with a 12 round decision ove Ali Rafik in October and it would seem plausible that the winner here will be looking for a big domestic show down with Ali Raymi.
(Image courtesy of Boxmob.jp)
This Saturday is a busy one with 2 major cards featuring Asian fighters in world title bouts. It may not be the busiest day of the year but it is certainly one of the most interesting.
As well as the Macau show we are also looking forward to a Japanese show promoted by Japanese promotional power house Teiken promotions who are putting on a small, 8 bout, card though one that features several very interesting looking contests including 2 world title bouts.
Prior to the world title action fans will get the chance to see the world ranked Ryo Akaho (24-1-2, 16) battle against recent world title challenger Antonio Tostado Garcia (14-3, 6). Akaho isn't one of the sports most talented fighters but he is certainly entertaining and with his power we suspect he'll stop Garcia in the middle rounds of the bout, if not earlier.
The first of the two world title fights will see Nicaraguan sensation Roman Gonzalez (40-0, 34) make the first defense of his WBC Flyweight title. Gonzalez, one of the sports most impressive fighters, will be battling against tough Filipino Rocky Fuentes (35-7-2, 20) in what looks likely to be a very entertaining bout though one that Gonzalez has to be favoured in, especially considering the way he won the title back in September by stopping Akira Yaegashi.
The other world title bout on this show will see the heavy handed Takashi Miura (27-2-2, 20) defending his WBC Super Featherweight title in a mandatory defence of his belt against heavy handed Mexican slugger Edgar Puerta (23-4-1, 19) in what could potentially be a FOTY contender. Miura is earning himself a reputation as a Mexcutioner after 3 successive wins over Mexican foes, including his thrilling win over Sergio Thompson, and he'll be hoping to extend that run as he takes on a fighter who is similar to him in terms mentality in the ring. Expect this one to be violent and highly exciting as long as it lasts.
The final world title bout involving an Asian fighter comes from the United Kingdom as former Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Hidenori Otake (22-1-3, 9) battles the unbeaten Scott Quigg (29-0-2, 22) in a bout for the WBA Super Bantamweight title. When this bout was signed Otake was unranked by the WBA, though he is now ranked #9 rather mysteriously. Otake is seen as a huge under-dog and with good reason considering his best wins are against domestic opponents and with that in mind we'd be shocked to see win, though like the two title bouts in Japan this should be entertaining as long as it lasts due to the styles of the men involved.
(Image courtesy of Boxmob.jp)
Today's action is very limited as we get the proverbial "calm before the storm" and we only get a trio of very low profile bouts in Australia featuring Asian fighters and a small card in Thailand.
The main event on the Thai card will see the unbeaten, and world ranked, Flyweight Nawaphon Por Chokchai (24-0, 17) putting his unbeaten record and WBC Asian Boxing Council Flyweight title on the line against Filipino challenger Noli Morales (10-5, 3). Looking at this bout we can't help but think it's a farce with Morales having already gone 0-5 in Thailand with his last 2 losses both being stoppages. Nawaphon, a seriously huge Flyweight, shouldn't have any troubles disposing of Morales unless he has completely drained himself making the Flyweight limit. The only interesting thing about this bout is just how notable is the size discrepancy going to be with some some suggesting that Nawaphon is really a Super Bantamweight fighting at Flyweight.
We have also been informed from our excellent Thai source that Chaiyong Sithsaithong (34-12-4, 24) will be in action though unfortunately we've been unable to locate the record for his opponent, who we have been told is Bryan Dennis, who we presume is an Australian.
Western Australia, Australia
The highest profile of the Asian's in action on this show is former world title challenger Angky Angkotta (27-10-1, 14) who twice fought in world title bouts against the exciting Jorge Arce. Angkotta a natural Super Flyweight-come-Bantamweight will be attempting to end a 3 fight losing streak as he takes on unbeaten Australian Super Featherweight Paul Fleming (18-0, 13) in what appears to be a very ugly mismatch. We'll be honest and say we fear a little bit for Angkotta here given his recent form and natural size disadvantage and hopefully the bout will have a cautious referee to stop anything bad happening to the Indonesian fighter.
In a much better looking contest fans will see Thailand's Patomsith Pathompothong (10-2, 4) battle with local fighter Nathaniel May (7-1, 4) in a bout that almost looks even on paper. It does need to be noted that the Thai has lost 2 of his last 4 bouts, including a decision in Australia to the talented Ibrahim Balla, though he is significantly more experienced than the 19 year old May who looked less than impressive against Waylon Law in February. This is a pretty decent bout on paper and should be us 8 interesting rounds.
The third bout will see Indonesian puncher Roy Tua Manihuruk (15-11-2, 11) battle against 20 year old local Brandon Ogilvie (8-1, 3). On paper this looks like a mismatch though we do suspect it will be entertaining with Ogilvie looking to build on a very impressive victory over Jerope Mercado from back in August. We hope the Indonesian can chin-check the Aussie here as that could make the bout rather interesting though we suspect Ogilvie will be too good for the visitor.
(Thai information courtesy of Pal who we again want to thank for all the help he gives us, it really is appreciated!)