This coming week kicks off with a pair of Japanese domestic cards at varying levels. One is a very interesting show with several bouts of note whilst the other has a trio of interesting, though much lower level, contests.
The more significant of the two Japanese cards comes from Tokyo as we get the next Dangan show.
This one is headlined by a very interesting Japanese Featherweight title bout as the defending champion, the unbeaten Rikki Naito (10-0, 5), attempts to over-come Shingo Eto (14-2-1, 9) and record his second defense of the belt. Naito, the young son of former Japanese and OPBF champion Cassius Naito, has looked like a quickly improving fighter however Eto cannot be written, especially considering the heart his brothers Taiki and Koki Eto have shown. This bout may not be a world class bout but it's an excellent domestic title bout and one that certainly will help the winner advance to a higher level. Strangely however the winner will only be regarded as the #4 guy at Super Featherweight in Japan, well behing world champions Takashi Uchiyama, the WBA champion, and WBC champion Takashi Miura as well as the exceptional Daiki Kaneko.
A second notable bout on this card will see former OPBF Bantamweight champion Hiroki Shiino (11-3, 10) battling against the upset minded Hideo Sakamoto (14-1-2, 4). Shiino, who currently holds a world ranking with the WBC, will be looking to record his second win since losing his OPBF title to Ryosuke Iwasa late last year however Sakamoto comes into this bout on a 4 fight winning streak and he is certainly not a bad fighter himself and will know there is a lot to gain from a win here.
The third bout of note here, and possibly the most exciting of the bunch, comes at Middleweight where former amateur star Takaaki Kamikawa (0-0) takes on the heavy handed and nationally ranked Shoma Fukumoto (4-1, 4). Fukumoto may be inexperienced as a professional but he's very heavy handed and this is a baptism of fire for Kamikawa who knows a win could fast track him towards a title fight. Excellent match even if it is a very tough assignment for the debutant.
The other Japanese card is from the Sangyo Shinko Center in Osaka where we get a much lesser card but one which still has a few interesting bouts.
The main event will see former OPBF female Light Flyweight champion Nana Yoshikawa (3-0, 1) attempt to continue her climb through the rankings she takes on Thai visitor Kledpetch KKP (6-3, 1), who is best known for losing to Shingo Go in a WBC female Flyweight title fight earlier this year. If Yoshikawa can score a very impressive victory here it's likely she'll be moved towards a world title fight in 2015, she's not ready yet but she may be by the end of next year.
In the chief support bout former OPBF title challenger Eita Kikuchi (14-4-4, 6) will battle against the heavy handed Toshiya Yokogawa (6-6-1, 5). Kikuchi is best known for being stopped by current OPBF champion Shingo Wake and since then he has suffered another stoppage loss. With Yokogawa's power we know that the "under-dog" could score a stoppage but he is pretty limited himself and has lost 2 of his last 3 at a lower level to what Kikuchi has been fighting at.
A third 8 rounder on this show will see the experienced Shota Kawaguchi (17-5-1, 7) battle against the light hitting Kosuke Isono (7-2-1, 1). Neither of these two have fought a notable opponent but they'll be hoping that a win could set them up for a run on the domestic rankings. If they can get into the top 15 then there is a chance they will get a notable bout in the near future.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)