Courtesy of http://www.boxer-hisataka.com/
There is an old British proverb that states "if at first you don't succeed" you should "try, try, try again". In the case of Japanese fighter Hiroyuki Hisataka (22-10-1, 10), a man dubbed "The Sexy Soldier", that's exactly what he's doing later this months.
The 28 year old Japanese fighter may not be a well known name but he's a 3-time world title challenger having lost in title bouts to Takefumi Sakata, Denkaosan Kaovichit and Hugo Fidel Cazares.
He'll be going in to his fourth world title fight later this month as he takes on WBO Super Flyweight champion Omar Andres Narvaez (39-1-2, 20), a talented Argentinian veteran who's sole loss is to Nonito Donaire.
Although Hisataka may not have an impressive looking record the 28 year old is genuinely a credible fringe contender. He is ranked in the top 15 by the WBC, IBF and WBO and has scored several noteworthy victories since his debut back in 2002. Those victories include a decision over Hussein Hussein, a stoppage of Panomroonglek Kaiyanghadaogym and most recently a decision over Sonny Boy Jaro.
As well as those victories many of Hisataka's losses have been close and to a high level of competition. Not only have they included Sakata, Kaovichit and Cazares in world title bouts but they've also included Tomonobu Shimizu, Kaiyanghadaogym, and Oleydong Sithsamerchai.
At 38 years old Narvaez, known as "El Hurracan", is an old man, especially in the Super Flyweight. He has impressively been able to maintain his world title at 115lbs though has began to show signs of his age and a long career which almost saw him defeated last time out to the excellent Felipe Orucuta.
At his best Narvaez was genuinely amazing. He was slippery on the defensive, lightning quick with combinations on the offensive and combined the two as he found ways to get inside, usually against bigger fighters, and unload stunning flurries before getting back out.
Of course at 38 Narvaez is no longer a fighter fighting at his best but he's still a skilled, tricky, intelligent fighter who can take care of himself in the ring and still show glimpses of his counter punching excellence.
With the ability of Narvaez and the fact he's fighting at home, this will not be an easy fight for Hisataka however the Japanese fighter has arguable done his best work away from home. His losses to Kaovichit and Oleydong, both in Thailand, were razor thin and if he fights to his best he could really make Narvaez sweat.
If Narvaez has slipped further from his narrow victory over Orucuta we could see the upset here. Hisataka has the youth, size and reach to make life difficult for Narvaez and also knows he'll be able to take the power of Narvaez. In fact if the bout ends up on the inside Hisataka himself can hold his own and may be be able to force Narvez into plan B and maybe even plan C.
Naevaez will rightfully be favoured going in, though a small, cheeky part of us actually does feel like the time is right for Hisataka to score his career defining victory and, at the fourth time of asking, win a world title.
World Title Previews
The biggest fights get broken down as we try to predict who will come out on top in the up coming world title bouts.