July 9th 2017-DIVS, Ekaterinburg, Russia
Daiki Kaneko (26-5-3, 18) Vs Pavel Malikov (11-0, 5)
Earlier this month we had a chance to see a brilliant bout as former world title challenger Daiki Kaneko [金子 大樹] faced the unbeaten Pavel Malikov in a real thriller.
May 6th 2017-Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Daiki Kaneko (25-5-3, 17) vs Tsuyoshi Tojo (13-14-5, 2)
Earlier this month fight fans in Japan saw former world title challenger Daiki Kaneko [金子 大樹] take on durable veteran Tsuyoshi Tojo [東上剛司] at the Korakuen Hall.
August 21st 2015-Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Masao Nakamura (19-3, 19) Vs Daiki Kaneko (21-4-3, 14)
Every so often a bout comes around that the hardcore fans know will be great even if many fans haven't heard of the two men involved in the contest. That was the case when former Japanese Super Featherweight champion Daiki Kaneko fought former OPBF Super Featherweight champion Masao Nakamura. Fight fans at the Korakuen Hall knew they were in for a treat, and what a treat they got.
(Video courtesy of Gentidori)
January 17th 2015- Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Jomthong Chuwatana (8-0, 4) Vs Daiki Kaneko (21-3-3, 14)
Every so often we get a special fight that pits two young and promising fighters against each other in a bout a that essentially sees the winner being moved towards a huge opportunity and the loser left to come again. They are the bouts that on paper excite us and leave us unsure who will come out on top and in the ring they keep us captivated. One such bout came this past January when OPBF Super Featherweight champion Jomthong Chuwatana went to Japan to defend his title against former world title challenger Daiki Kaneko. The combined ages of the two fighters was 51, between them they had fought in just 35 professional bouts but it was still a mouth watering match up. For those who missed it, here it is.
(Note-the graphic on screen has Jomthong's name as Thanakorn Phawachart. That's his birth name, he is however better known by his fighting name Jomthong Chuwatana)
One of the most criminally under-rated Japanese fighters right now is Super Featherweight contender Daiki Kaneko who we, honestly, believe will be a world in the coming years.
This past weekend Kaneko fought his second bout since his loss to Takashi Uchiyama, last New Years Eve, and he impressed once again as he stopped Cirilo Espino and showed off why we rate him so highly.
Built like a monster at 130lbs Kaneko combines solid fundamentals, surprising hand speed, good movement, serious strength, spiteful power and a real toughness. All which allowed him to see off his Filipino opponent with out too many issues and becoming just the second man in history to stop Espino.
(We would like to apologise for some of the camera work here and the editing, sadly it wasn't done by ourselves but with video of these fights being hard to find we felt it better to include the fight "as is" than not feature it at all. So if there are continuity issues we are very sorry but for now they are out of our hands. With that said we would like to thank Y TAKA for the video)
When we talk about the best Super Featherweight on the planet many, including ourselves, would make a very strong case for Takashi Uchiyama. He is the man with more notable wins at the weight than any other fighter and he is the man with some of the most stunning KO's in the division. In fact going through his record reads like a who's who of the division with wins over Takashi Miura, Juan Carlos Salgado, Jorge Solis and Bryan Vazquez.
We would suggest, however, that Uchiyama's hardest bout came against the previously unheralded Daiki Kaneko who, at the time, was known on by those who follow the Japanese domestic scene.
Going in to this bout Uchiyama had made 7 defences with 6 KO's, the only man not to be stopped by the heavy hitting champion was Michael Farenas and that bout was ended early due to a clash of heads in round 3 force a technical draw. It was expected by many that Uchiyama would stop Kaneko, after all Kaneko's best wins had come on the Japanese domestic scene against the likes of of former champion Seiichi Okada, multi time challenger Kyohei Tamakoshi and first time challenger Ryota Kajiki, none of whom would have been a match for Uchiyama.
What we ended up getting was a surprise. The bout wasn't a blow out, in fact it never really looked like Kaneko was going to be stopped as the challenger proved he was just as strong and tough as the champion who was forced to work hard, and pull himself off the canvas. It was, by far, the toughest test for Uchiyama and surprisingly it was the first time he had gone the distance in more than 4 years!
Although Kaneko failed in his title bid here we have to believe that this performance has proven he is world class and he's now only waiting for another opportunity. If, or rather when, he gets another world title fight we suspect he'll take home the gold.
Whilst most international fans will know the name Daiki Kaneko due to his loss to Takashi Uchiyama at the back end of last year he's actually very well known by Japanese boxing fans due to his reign as the Japanese Super Featherweight champion. Kaneko, who won the title May 2012, defended the belt 4 times with each of those victories coming by T/KO before he fought Uchiyama for the WBA world title and although they were "only" domestic title fights he did prove himself as one of the most freakishly strong fighters in the division.
The second of Kaneko's 4 defences came against Ryota Kajiki. Kajiki had stopped his previous 7 opponents and at 25 years old was seen as a promising and heavy handed fighter despite having 6 losses on his record going in to this bout. He wasn't just heavy handed but he was also tough having taken Masao Nakamura 8 rounds in the fight before Nakamura became OPBF Super Featherweight champion.
The bout saw both men starting slowly and being somewhat cautious in respect of the other man's power. By the middle of round 2 hour things began to heat up and in round 3 we saw both men begin to unload in bursts on their opponents. It wasn't non-stop action but it was exciting action with both believing they had the power to hurt the other. As the fight continued to heat up and both began taking risks it seemed almost certain that the fight wouldn't see the final bell.
In round 6 Kaneko really turned on the style and went for the kill as he unloaded a heavy assault on Kajiki forcing the referee to stop the challenger who had been braved but was beginning to take a real beating.
The Super Featherweight division is one of, if not the, most exciting division in regards to Japanese talent. The country currently boasts both the WBA champion, Takashi Uchiyama, and the WBC champion, Takashi Miura, as well as two of the best contenders. One of those contenders is the heavy handed Masao Nakamura whilst the other is the incredibly over-looked and ridiculously strong Daiki Kaneko.
Kaneko is a fighter well known on the Japanese domestic scene but only just known on the international stage. He is however a man we think international fans are going to see a lot over the coming few years.
Aged just 17 when he began his career Kaneko suffered 2 losses in his teens. One of those losses was a 5th round TKO defeat at the hands of Mitsuya Omura back in 2007. Following that Kaneko rebuilt his career, found his man strength and became a bit of a phenom on the Japanese domestic scene running up a 16 fight unbeaten run. Included in that run was a Japanese title winning effort, against Seiichi Okada, and 4 defences.
For Kaneko his 4th defence would likely have been the most pleasing as he finally got revenge over Omura, and in very quick fashion, stopping his challenger inside a round.
Interesting Omura actually failed to make weight for the bout. That didn't help him however and the man he had beaten as a boy 6 years earlier was now a man on the verges of a world title fight, a fight Kaneko got 4 months later. Although Kaneko lost that one, dropping a decision to Uchiyama, he had proven himself as a tough fighter with the potential to be a world champion sooner rather than later.
(Video thanks to Y TAKA)
The video below, courtesy of Yokohama Hikari Boxing Gym shows the fight between Daiki Kaneko and Shogo Ishikawa from May 31st 2014. The fight was Kaneko's first bout following his unsuccessful world title challenge on December 31st 2013. Although Kaneko lost that day, to Takashi Uchiyama, he made us a fan and after that performance, and this one, we've no doubt he will one day become a world champion.
(Video courtesy of Yokohama Hikari Boxing Gym/youtube)
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