Earlier today we were informed that Thai promoter Kiatkreerin were set to put on their next card on February 26th in Bangkok, with the card to air on Thairath.
At the moment we're unsure on the specifics for the show though from what we under the card will feature a trio of notable fighters from the Kiatkreerin banner with the most well known of those being former amateur star Manus Boonjumnong (4-0, 2) [มนัส บุญจำนงค์].
Manus, a Middleweight hopeful, is a 2-time Olympic medal winner who turned professional last year and has already run up 4 wins and moved into 8 round bouts, whilst slowly looking more and more like a professional.
From we under-stand the other bouts will include Patomsuk Pathompothong (31-4-1, 19) [ปฐมศึก เกษตรพัฒนา] fighting in an IBF Asia title fight at 140lbs against Stevie Ongen Ferdinandus (17-10-1, 8).
Yesterday fans watching on the Top Rank youtube channel or CCTV 5 saw Japan's 2012 Olympic Hero Ryota Murata (9-0, 6) [村田 諒太] score a 2nd round TKO win over Argentinian fighter Gaston Alejandro Vega (24-11-1-1, 10) in a bout staged in Shanghai. That bout saw Murasta extend his unbeaten record and kick off 2016 with a bout that had some moments of excitement.
Today, following that bout, the Japanese press went relatively crazy with a number of articles about the contest and the post fight press conference, which took place today.
At that press conference Teiken president Akihiko Honda [本田 明彦] layed down Teiken plans for their Middleweight hopeful.
As previously reported the immediate future seems to be a US training camp, which is to take place in March and see Murata sharing the ring with some top sparring partners as he looks to make some drastic improvements and prepare himself for some world level competition later in the year.
Following that training camp the focus will be on a bout in May. Details in regards to that bout aren't yet available though it's likely to be in Japan with the potential to come on the same card as the next bouts featuring Naoya Inoue (9-0, 8) [井上 尚弥], who is expected to be facing David Carmona (20-2-5, 8), and Akira Yaegashi (23-5, 12) [八重樫 東], with all three men being favourites of Fuji TV.
According to Honda's comments today the plan is to then work towards getting a bout with unbeaten British fighter Billy Joe Saunders (23-0, 12), the current WBO champion.
Whilst Saunders appears to be the "easy" target at Middleweight, given that Gennady Golovkin [Геннадий Геннадьевич Головкин] holds the WBA "super" and IBF title and appears to be chasing the WBC title for which he is the mandatory challenger, it's also fair to say that Saunders has other possible opponents and would certainly not be forced into facing Murata unless Teiken can pull some strings with the WBO to get their man into a mandatory position.
As of the latest WBO rankings Murta is ranked #8, though could find himself rising through the rankings in February given his recent activity.
Earlier today we were informed that the officials were announced for this coming Thursday's WBA Minimumweight tile bout between the unbeaten Knockout CP Freshmart (11-0, 6) [น็อคเอาท์ ซีพีเฟรชมาร์ท] and the wonderfully talented Nicaraguan Carlos Buitrago (28-1-1-1, 16).
The referee for the bout will be Japan's Kazunobu Asao, who has got world title experience having done fights like Naoko Fujioka Vs Naoko Yamaguchi and Poonsawat Kratingdaneggym Vs Ryol Li Lee. Notably this appears to be his first assignment in Thailand in more than 20 years, going back to when Asao was the third man in the ring for a bout between Khaosai Galaxy and Je-Suk Park back in 1991.
The judges will be Levi Martinez, Octavio Rodriguez and Ferlin Marsh.
Martinez is an American who has been busy this year having judged a number of bouts in El Salvador. Notably he's returning to Asia after having been in Japan for two fights back in December, though he wasn't needed in either of those bouts as Kosei Tanaka stopped Vic Saludar in 6 rounds and Naoya Inoue blew away Warlito Parrenas in 2 rounds. He's a very experienced judge and although he had some poor cards, including an awful card for the McJoe Arroyo Vs Arthur Villanueva bout, where he had Arroyo winning 98-91, he is generally pretty solid.
Rodriguez is a Panamanian judge who, again, has been around and is experienced. At the end of last year he was in Russia though has been to Argenian, El Salvador, Haiti, Mexico, Peru, Thailand, Germany, Dominican Republic, South Africa and Monaco. Interestingly he did the first bout between these two men, back in 2014, and had the bout scored 115-113 to Buitrago, like both of the other judges.
Marsh is from New Zealand and, according to boxrec at least, is a somewhat new judge with boxrec having only 18 bouts to his name, though the first of those was in 2001. Those bouts include contests in China, Japan, Korea and Monaco. His most notable bouts include Hisashi Amagasa's bout with Guillermo Rigondeaux, which he had 107-99 after 11 rounds, Takashi Uchiyama's contest with Jomthong Chuwatana, which he had 10-9 after one round, and Randy Petalcorin's win over Walter Tello, which he had 59-55, though notably they all ended in stoppage.
This coming week Thai fans have a lot to look forward too with a pair of notable rematches, the second of which is set to take place on February 5th. That bout will see WBA "interim" Flyweight champion Stamp Kiatniwat (14-0, 6) [ขวัญไทย ศิษย์หมอเส็ง] defending his crown against the man he beat for the belt, Gregorio Lebron (13-3, 11).
Earlier today we were informed that Lebron was in Thailand for the bout and was said to be having "no problems at all" with his weight being on target and the accommodation being suitable as he continued to put the finishing touches to his preparation.
At the moment the fighter is about 3KG's over the limit but is expected to shed that with ease by Thursday's weigh in and he seems confident with his team seemingly wanting their man to chase a KO and take the result away from the judges, who they blamed for losing the first bout.
In regards to the judges all 3 here will be neutral with the judges named as Gustavo Jarquin, from Nicaragua, South African Stanley Christodoulou and American Derek Milham whilst the referee will be Raul Caiz Jr, who was a judge in their first bout scoring that contest a draw.
(Image courtesy of thairec.com)
Earlier this month we reported that former WBA Atomweight queen Ayaka Miyao (20-6-2, 4) [宮尾 綾香] would be returning to the ring on April 10th it's since been announced that she will be joined on that card by a current world champion, Naoko Shibata (14-3-1, 4) [柴田 直子].
Shibata, the current IBF female Light Flyweight champion, will not be defending her title on the show, and is instead expected to face a yet to be named Thai in an 8 round bout. The contest comes 5 months after the champion recorded her 4th defenses of the title, a split decision draw against Maria Salina, and comes following a very tough 2015 that saw her in two very close and competitive bouts.
Incidentally it also seems like Miyao's still not had her opponent for the show name, but it's likely she too will be facing a Thai opponent in a stay busy bout, albeit one that allows her to test the water at Minimumweight.
From what we understand WBA Super Featherweight "Super" champion Takashi Uchiyama [内山 高志] is booked to make an appearance on the show, though it won't be in a fighting capacity.
Ayaka Miyao to return on April 10th
(Image courtesy of http://www.kadoebi.com/)
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