January 26th 2012- Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Takuya Kogawa (17-2, 10) vs Shigetaka Ikehara (22-2-2, 18)
In early 2012 Japanese fight fans had the chance to see Takuya Kogawa face off with Shigetaka Ikehara in a bout for the then vacant Japanese Flyweight title.
October 28th 2010-Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Takuya Kogawa (16-1, 10) vs Danilo Pena (23-7-2, 10)
In 2010 Japan's Takuya Kogawa [粉川拓也] got his first title fight, battling against Danilo Pena for the vacant OPBF Flyweight title.
July 7th 2009- Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Takuya Kogawa (12-1, 7) Vs Xiong Zhao Zhong (12-2-1, 8)
In 2009 Japanese action fighter Takuya Kogawa [粉川拓也] faced off with China's Xiong Zhao Zhong [熊朝忠], who would later go onto become China's first male world champion, and one of the most significant figures in Chinese boxing. fighter
May 9th 2010-Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Takuya Kogawa (15-1, 9) vs Numphonnoi Patanakan Gym (0-0)
Japan's Takuya Kogawa [粉川 拓也] has long been one of boxing's most under-rated fighters, here we see him in "prelude" bout against Thailand's Numphonnoi Patanakan Gym, a fight later Kogawa would claim an OPBF title before later facing Pongsaklek Wonjongkam in a WBC world title fight.
Note-Numphonnoi was listed as being 12-5 (2) by the on screen graphic.
Earlier this year was saw Takuya Kogawa lose a very controversial bout in Thailand to Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep. The bout was one that would have seen Kogawa become the WBA interim Flyweight champion. The loss was a hard one to swallow considering that a fight earlier Kogawa had lost the Japanese title just a fight earlier in another close one to Suguru Muranaka. His career was on the ropes entering his most recent bout against Hiroyuki Hisataka.
Like Kogawa we saw Hisataka entertaing the bout on the back of successive losses, the first was a stoppage loss in a WBO Super Flyweight world title bout against Omar Andres Narvaez whilst the second was a decision loss to Ohashi gym prospect Ryo Matsumoto. Like Kogawa his career was on the rocks.
The two men put their future on the line in a real crossroads fight. The winner would continue to have title aspirations whilst the loser would likely be relagated to fighting the emerging prospects in their coming fighters. What we got as a result was a really good, and very meaningful contest that saw both men puting it all on the line, especially in a sensational 8th round.
We won't ruin the result but this was a great bout and round 8 is possibly the Japanese domestic round of the year. Enjoy!
(Video courtesy of Miyata Gym Boxing Channel)
The Flyweight division is one of the best in boxing right now and the depth of talent is ridiculous. It's amazing that one division can be so deep.
One of the many contenders lost in the depth of the division is Suguru Muranaka, the current Japanese champion is ranked by all 4 world title bodies and is viewed, by those in the know, as a genuine fringe contender if even if those outside of Japan haven't even heard of him.
Muranaka's most notable fight came in December 2013 when he took on fellow contender Takuya Kogawa in a bout the Japanese national title. It was genuinely a competitive contest and a bout that helped both men enhance their standing in the sport. If you've not had the chance to see it, here you go, watch 2 of the Flyweight division's under-rated contenders in action against each other.
Following this bout Kogawa would fight Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep in a WBA interim world title fight. If you've not seen that it's well worth watching to further show how good Kogawa is.
(Video courtesy of 村中優後援会)
When we think of hard luck stories in Japanese boxing we do have to feel a little bit sorry for Takuya Kogawa. In his first world title fight he travelled to Thailand and lost to the great Pongsaklek Wonjongkam in a major step up. That bout came when Wonjongkam was still in his pomp and came 4 months before Wonjongkam defeated the dangerous Edgar Sosa. In his second world title fight Kogawa was jobbed in an atrocious decision against Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep, a decision that really was one of the worst of 2014.
Another of Japan's hard luck stories is former Kogawa opponent Tetsuma Hayashi who really gave Kogawa a very tough bout and, with slightly different judges, could actually be unbeaten and a Japanese Flyweight champion.
Kogawa and Hayashi met in April 2012 and put on a great showing between them that saw the men being very hard to split as they each seemed to give as good as they got in a highly competitive and genuinely enthralling 10 round battle that featured a high amount of action though perhas lacked a bit of drama due to the lack of power both men possess.
We won't pretend this was a 2012 FOTY contender, especially not when compared to the Daud Cino Yordan/Lorenzo Villanueva bout, but it is highly entertaining action fight that shows just what a Japanese title can mean to two young fighters each hoping to prove their quality.
When a Japanese fighter travels to Thailand we know they are up against it. The conditions in Thailand are torrid for away fighters, the judging can often be suspect, and history has gone against Japanese fighters time and time again when they have travelled to their neighbours for big fights. Those 3 things seem to combine against Japan's Takuya Kogawa on March 4th when he travelled to fight WBA interim Flyweight champion Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep.
Yodmongkol, in his previous fight, had stopped Japan's Koki Eto in a brilliant contest to claim the title and was defending it for the first time against Kogawa who had come into this bout on a loss of his Japanese Flyweight title to Suguru Muranaka. On paper it looked almost certain that Yodmongkol was going to make an easy defence proving the difference between Japanese domestic class and interim world class.
Instead of seeing a mismatch what we got was one of the more controversial bouts of the year as the brave, busy and determined Kogawa out worked Yodmongkol for vast swathes of the bout in a contest that really looked like their was only one winner. Unfortunately our eyes and those of the judges appeared to be seeing something different with Yodmongkol retaining his title on the official cards.
What we suggest is that you watch this fight and give your view in the comment section below, maybe include your score and see if we were right or the judges were right.
Whilst Yodmongkol was lucky here we cannot possibly hate on him for beating Koki Eto, though we do suggest that you watch that bout if you haven't already.
Here we include some of the best, most interesting, most exciting or most eye catching videos from around the Asian boxing world.