The busy action continues on May 9th with a host of notable fighters in action with some very interesting match ups.
The most significant bout involving an Asian comes from Texas, where unbeaten Bantamweight Tomoki Kameda (31-0, 19) attempts to claim the WBA “regular” title and over-come Britain's hard working Jamie McDonnell (25-2-1, 12). This bout was originally announced as a WBO-WBA unification bout but Kameda was forced to vacate by the WBO who refused to recognise the bout as a unification due to the WBA having multiple champions. Whilst the WBO's move has removed some lure of the bout we're still expecting the action inside the ring to be fantastic and we really can't wait for this.
On a different US show fans will have the chance to see Chinese Heavyweight giant Taishan Dong (3-0, 2) continue his development as he takes on American foe Karinn Davis (2-4, 2). Whilst Dong is heavily hyped in the US he is being matched softly and that's shown again here with Davis being a 40 year old who fought much of his career at Cruiserweight before making his Heavyweight debut earlier this year. Notably Dong will have a 1' height advantage here completely dwarfing Davis when the two get in to the ring.
Whilst the attention grabbing bouts, for many, are stateside we do still get plenty of notable action in Japan with the most notable of two shows coming from Kobe.
The Kobe show is a genuinely intriguing one which is headlined by the come-back of the popular Hozumi Hasegawa (33-5, 15). Hasegawa, fighting for the first time since he was stopped by Kiko Martinez last year, will be taking on dangerous Mexican Horacio Garcia (29-0, 21) in what looks to be a really tough return to action. This is a really difficult bout for Hasegawa though he knows that if he scores a win he could well be back in the title mix by the end of the year. The stakes however are high and another stoppage loss could well be the end of his fantastic career.
As well as the interesting main event there was also some notable fighters on the under-card. The most notable of those fighters is the fast rising Shun Kubo (6-0, 4) who is world ranked at Super Bantamweight, by the WBC, and should really have an easy time in his upcoming bout with Masajiro Honda (6-5, 4). We like Kubo a lot and hope that we see him in a more notable bout next time out.
A genuinely notable bout on this card will see Japanese based Filipino Jonathan Baat (28-6-3, 14) take on Takahiro Shigee (12-1-1, 10). This is Baat's first bout since he upset Kenta Onjo in March and if he wins again here he'll be on the verges of a title fight. For Shigee this will be his first bout of note since he was stopped in 8 rounds by Rodrigo Guerrero last July. Incidentally both men have been stopped by Guerrero.
Another really interesting match up on this card will see Tetsuya Hisada (21-9-2, 11) take on Shun Kosaka (9-1) in what should be a very competitive 8 round bout between decent but flawed fighters. Neither of these two are great but that should lead to a competitive match up and at the end of the day that's what we enjoy more than quick blow outs in mismatches.
A second Japanese card comes from Osaka where fans will get a female world title bout along with a number of relatively miss-able under-card bouts.
The main event will see WBC female Minimumweight champion Yuko Kuroki (12-4-1, 6) defending her title against multi-time title challenger Masae Akitaya (9-5-2, 3). For Kuoki this will be the second defense of the title she won last May, with a decision over Mari Ando, and on paper it's a step down. However Akitaya is certainly not a push over and will come into this bout feeling like this could be her last chance. Don't be surprised if this one ends up being fantastic despite neither fighter being being near the elite.
As for the under-card there isn't really anything of note happening on it, despite 8 scheduled bouts supporting the main event.
There will also be title action in Korea where we're expecting a couple of low level title bouts,
The most “interesting” of those bouts is a WBA Asia Middleweight title bout between Eun Chang Lee (8-4, 4) and Thailand's John Ford (6-6-1, 5). Lee may be remembered by some for his Macau Bout with Brazilian Middleweight Esquiva Falcao and although he clearly lost that bout he did show his toughness and strength. Ford on the other hand was last seen being stopped by Shuhei Tsuchiya at Light Welterweight. Given the size difference between the two we have to assume this is going to be a horrible mismatch.
The other title bout is set to be for some PABA title, though we're unsure which actual belt it will be with the suspicion it'll be a female title bout at Super Featherweight.
As well as the two title bouts this show will feature 3 under-card bouts.
We get the chance to see an interest bout in Bulgaria as Kazakh Bantamweight banger Zhanat Zhakiyanov (24-1, 17) will be battling against the unbeaten Argentinian Hector Rolando Guzman (14-0, 9). This bout will be for the WBA International Bantamweight title and seems to suggest that Zhakiyanov may not be heading the WBC route after all, a smart move considering the champion is the sensational Shinsuke Yamanaka.
Wellington, New Zealand
In New Zealand fans will have the chance to see an “interim” WIBA Super Bantamweight title fight as Thailand's Anrey Onesongchaigym (7-1-1, 3) battles Gentiane Lupi (3-1-1, 1). This bout isn't likely to tell much about either fighter though should leave the loser well away from a notable fight.
As we've gone through the month of February we've slowly seen action pick up. As we come to the end of the month we're seeing action pick up again with an OPBF title fight in Japan, a collision of prospects and the third professional bout in the career of a Chinese Heavyweight hopeful.
One of the shows is in Japan where we get a genuinely important card with a couple of really notable bouts at different levels.
The most significant of the bouts is in the Super Bantamweight division as the world class Shingo Wake (17-4-2, 10) defends his OPBF title for the 5th time in a little under 2 years. Wake, who is chasing a world title fight later this year, will find himself up against Filipino challenger Jimmy Paypa (16-2-1, 6). This fight was apparently close to being made for December last year and it could well be that we end up with both fighters coming in “over-boiled” for this, or we could see a destruction by a man looking to make a statement. If Wake does come out and scores an impressive win the talk is that he will be getting a shot at WBA "Super" and WBO Super Bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux.
Wake isn't the only fighter from the Koguchi gym to be on this card as rising teenager Kenya Yamashita (7-0, 4) puts his unbeaten record on the line against Jo Tanooka (9-2-3). The unbeaten Yamashita was the Flyweight Rookie of the Year in 2014 and he is being tipped to go a very long way in his career however Tanooka is a great test and will be looking for a win himself after coming up short last time out against Hiroki Saito.
Another notable bout on this card will see former OPBF and Japanese Super Flyweight title challenger Toyoto Shiraishi (24-8-2, 11) battle against Yoshiyuki Yamaguchi (8-7-1, 4). For Shiraishi this is a must win bout following a run of just 1 win in 4 bouts however Yamaguchi shouldn't provide much in terms of competition
Talking about fighters who need a win Kota Sato (9-6-2, 4) has to be desperate to get a “W” after going 0-2-1 in his last 3 bouts. Sato will be up against Toshikuni Wake (8-14-3, 2). Wake is nothing other than a journeyman and shouldn't be able to beat Kota though we suspect a loss for Kota will be the end here.
One other bout on this card, a really interesting one in fact, will see Kazuma Sanpei (11-1, 4) battle against Masaru Sueyoshi (8-1, 5). Sanpei comes in to this bout on the back of his first career defeat, an 88 second blow out loss to Japanese based Filipino Johnreil Maligro, whilst Sueyoshi brings a 5 fight winning streak into this bout including a very notable decision over Yuta Nagai. Brilliant and brave match up for both guys.
In Russia fans will get the chance to see unbeaten Kazakh prospect Roman Zhailauov (13-0, 8) battle against the tough but limited Vyacheslav Yakovenko (7-19-1, 3). This will be Zhailauov's first bout of the year though we'll be honest it does seem like his team have slowed his progress over the past few bouts.
In the US American fans will get the chance to see Chinese giant Taishan Dong (2-0, 2) who hopes to extend his winning run as he battles against Roy McCrary (3-2, 3). The imposing Dong has to be a big favourite here against the 41 year old McCrary though we're more interested in the performance of Dong here rather than just getting the win. So far Dong has shown some ability but there are a lot of questions regarding his potential and so far none of his opponents have really been able to ask any questions of him with Tommy Washington Jr being a laughably bad opponent last time out.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
District of Columbia, USA
For a second successive week we get world title action in a mid-week bout as Filipino puncher Mavin Mabait (19-2-2, 13) gets a huge, and unexpected, opportunity against WBC Super Flyweight champion Carlos Cuadras (30-0-1, 24). Going into this bout Cuadras will be defending his belt for the second time since defeating Srisaket Sor Rungvisai for the title back in May with a technical decision. Sadly for Mabait however nothing has quite gone his way this year having been stopped by Alejandro Hernandez earlier in the year and, having only got this fight on 2-weeks notice, the Filipino is being given little chance against the Mexican champion. It's worth noting that until last week we all suspect that it would Sonny Boy Jaro battling against Cuadras and not Mabait and it's going to a bit question as to whether or not Mabait is ready for a fighter as good as Cuadras
On a second US show fans will get the chance to see Chinese Heavyweight giant Taishan Dong (1-0, 1) return to action as he battles against the win-less Michael Lane (0-3). Dong, who looked a very imposing figure on his debut earlier this year, will be hoping to add Lane's name to that of Alex Rozman who he stopped in 2 rounds. Lane has never been stopped but has also been inactive in recent years with just one fight in the last 36 months. This should be easy for Dong in all honesty though we do wonder how far he really can go, even with his formidable size he will need to develop his skills to become any sort of a contender.
In Japan we get the next Dangan show, Dangan 115. The card will feature a total of 12 bouts, all of which will be 4 rounders and feature novices with 4 all debutant contests. The names, as with many of these 4 round shows, isn't really important as the key is the action which comes thick and fast with one fight start almost as soon as the previous bout ended. These are great for fans even if the fighters don't seem to get much attention
In Sanaa we see our favourite Yemeni fighter in action as the charismatic Hani Ansi (7-0-1, 6) battles against the once beaten Muhamad Fikri (3-1, 1). If you've not seen Ansi in action you've missed out on someone who seems to channel the spirit of Emmanuel Augustus and fights in a very peculiar yet interesting manner. We've got to admit however we don't know much about Fikri who may end up being a good test for Ansi here.
(Poster courtesy of notifight.com)
July 18th-Teiru Kinoshita headlines a busy day of action which also features the debut of a huge Chinese Heavyweight!
Something's in boxing are rare. One of those is an IBF title fight that takes place in Japan and another is a Chinese Heavyweight. Amazingly this Friday we get the chance to see both of those in a day that is genuinely littered with fights featuring Asians in contests that we wouldn't typically have expected.
The most important card of the day anywhere in the world on Friday is in the amazing Portopia Hotel in Kobe, Hyogo, as we get the day's only world title fight. The bout in question is the aforementioned IBF title fight which will see the unbeaten Teiru Kinoshita (19-0-1, 3) taking on South African puncher Zolani Tete (18-3, 16) in a battle for the vacant IBF Super Flyweight title. The bout, the first title fight in Kinoshita's career, is a hugely important one for not only the fighters but also the venue which is hosting it's first ever fights and also the IBF who has still viewed negatively in Japan.
Whilst the Kinoshita/Tete bout is the headline contest it's just 1 of the 6 bouts on the card. Sadly the most notable support bouts are both pretty poor with one of them being between Shinichiro Morikawa (15-4-1, 10) and Ryota Kihara (6-8-4, 5) and the other being a bout between Yubon Kim (10-4, 3) and Yuta Matsuda (9-10-2, 4). Despite these bouts it's clear the fans at the venue will all be there to see the main event and not the support.
Another Japanese card will be held at the Korakuen Hall as Kaneko Promotions put on a show that did promise a lot until recently.
Originally the main event for this show was to feature Japanese Super Bantamweight champion Hidenori Otake (22-1-3, 9) defending his belt against Daisuke Furuhashi (16-5, 6). Sadly a rib injury has forced Otake out of the bout and as a result the card does look a bit disappointing. As a result of Otake's injury the main event will now be the contest between Ryuto Oho (6-1, 2) and Shuji Hamada (12-6-3, 2). It's an acceptable contest but sadly it's not a great main event, especially considering that the main event was originally supposed to be a very interesting title bout.
From the other 7 bouts on the card we need to admit that we are a little bit excited by the contest between Toshimitsu Goto (12-10-1, 5) and Spice Matsushita (11-8, 2). The records of neither man is great but they are about the same and both will be coming to win, also both men are better than their records indicate and will be looking to prove it in a really solid 50-50 bout.
A third Japanese card takes place in Osaka at the Bodymaker Colosseum. This card is by far the smallest profile show in Japan for the day and will feature a total of 7 bouts, the most notable of which is arguably the 8 round contest between the experienced Tetsuya Hisada (21-8-1, 11) and the limited Takahiro Murai (9-5-1, 3). We imagine Hisada will win but it's a bout that is competitive and could go either way though neither guy is likely to even win a national title as they campaign in some of the deepest divisions on the Japanese domestic scene.
Pathum Thani, Thailand
The action in Thailand will feature the very promising Nawaphon Por Chokchai (21-0, 15) who will be defending his WBC Asian Boxing Council Flyweight title against Filipino visitor Jay-ar Estremos (10-7, 4). Nawaphon, the younger brother of former world champion Suriyan Sor Rungvisai, is widely touted as a future world champion and shouldn't really struggle with Estremos here though the Filipino is much better than his record indicates and he should really have a victory over Kwanpichit OnesongchaiGym from earlier this year.
In the California we have two intriguing contests.
One of those, the main event on a Fox Sports 1 card, will see former world title challenger Mercito Gesta (27-1-1, 15) taking on the experienced Luis Arceo (28-12-4, 18). Although the bout looks like a mismatch it is always fun to see "No Mercy" in the ring and hopefully he'll be at his most explosive against an opponent who is there to be taken out.
On the same card fans will get the chance to see Chinese Heavyweight giant Taishan Dong (0-0) make his debut against the limited Alex Rozman (2-6, 1). Stood at 6'11" Dong really is a giant of a man and their seems to be real excitement about him though we really haven't seen much of him action other than one or two kick boxing contests, including a knockout win over Bob Sapp. If however he has skills as well as size he could be a genuine force in the division and it would be great to see him having success in the boxing ranks.
New York, USA
We have another US bout that takes place in New York. This bout will see Mongolia's
San Luis Potosí, Mexico
Staying in North America we also have a fight of interest in Mexico. This contest will see the promising Mexican based Japanese fighter Shoky Sakai (17-3, 11) battle against Abraham Cordero (8-2, 5). Although not a world beater Sakai is certainly developing into a capable fighter and his clear win over the previously unbeaten Omar Barajas back in May suggests that he may have the potential to become a possible contender in the future. For those interested in the titles this bout will be fought for the vacant WBC Youth Silver Lightweight title and of course the Youth titles are often a stepping stone to bigger and better things.
Another bout outside of Asia will see IBO Super Flyweight champion Edrin Dapudong (29-5, 17) defending his belt against Lwandile Sityatha (16-3-1, 7). Dapudong, who won the belt by stopping Gideon Buthelezi inside a round last year, will be hoping to become the first Filipino to win back-to-back fights in South Africa though he will be coming into this fight after 13 months out of the ring and he may have some ring rust going into this bout.
(Image courtesy of Senrima Kobe Promotions)