.Last week we reported that former multi-time world Minimumweight champion Katsunari Takayama (31-8-0-1, 12) [高山 勝成] needed to fight before his 37th birthday, on May 12th, to be granted a professional license. It now appears he and his team have sorted that out, with the announcement this morning that Takayama will return on May 10th.
The popular "Lightning Kid" is pencilled in to fight 2 days before his birthday on "Champion's Road 68" at the "El Osaka" in Osaka.
The bout is set to be a 6 round Flyweight bout with Takayama taking on 20 year old foe Aoba Mori (6-2) [森 青葉].
The bout will be Takayama's first professional bout since August 2016, following which he retired from professional boxing to chase a shot at amateur glory. Sadly for Takayama he failed to make it to the final stages of the Japanese national championships last year and decided to return to the professional ranks this year.
As we all know there is a global situation essentially putting global boxing on pause right now, and this show may be cancelled down the line, but this bout was announced this morning, suggesting that the show is almost certainly taking place, even if there are going to be various conditions attached to it.
Earlier today the East Japan Boxing Association began a campaign dubbed "Save Japan Boxing", to help protect the sport in the country from the sweeping global issue that is now effecting pretty much everyone in one way or another.
The campaign will be pushed heavily as part of the April 5th East Japan Rookie of the Year show in Tokyo, which as previously reported will be shown on YouTube for free through the A-sign boxing channel, to make up for the fact it will not have spectators in the venue.
Those that follow us on twitter will see us retweeting the live link for that event when it becomes available. This show will begin at mid-day local time, and will feature what is essentially 2 events, with each event featuring 8 bouts. Giving us 16 fights during the day.
As well as the YouTube show on April 5th there will also be a t-shirt made available, as seen above, to help raise funds. From what we understand these will be offered to fans who "tip" or "fund" the event, and will be signed by Japanese world champions.
There will also be a video released to "Save Japan Boxing" lead by some of the biggest names in Japanese boxing.
All of that will obviously be pushed with the hashtag "#SaveJapanBoxing" which is being tagged in English, and is being run with the English phrase through the entire campaign.
As well as the April 5th show there is also a scheduled April 26th show, for the West Japan Rookie of the Year. Again there is no spectators, and at the moment it's unclear if this will be streamed live or not.
We ask, all of our readers, to do what they can to tune in to the April 5th card and do what they can to enjoy some boxing. Whilst it might not be elite level action the Rookie of the Year shows are great fun and given the absolute lack of boxing world wide at the moment this is one of the rare times the boxing world can get behind a single event. Given none of the fighters are well known it's a great opportunity for fans to go in "blind" and not have their personal opinions dictating things and instead just enjoy the sport for what it is.
Yesterday Japanese veteran Yuki Nonaka (33-11-3, 10) [野中 悠樹] received the Amagasaki City Sports Special Award, due to the impact he has made on the city in regards to sport.
Today it was also confirmed that he has moved from the Ioka Gym to the Atsumi Gym, something that had been reported in February but never really made too public as the press conference to announce it was cancelled, due to the outbreak of a certain issue that has now become a massive global problem.
At the moment it's unclear when Nonaka will return to the ring, but at the age of 42 time is ticking on his hopes of fighting for a world title. He really needs the global issue that is forcing fights and events to be cancelled to be cleared up shortly, though sadly that's not looking likely given how wide spread, and quickly growing, it is.
We want to congratulate Nonaka on the award.
Earlier today on social media Dangan boxing announced that they were cancelling shows scheduled for May 16th and May 17th at the Sumida City Gymnasium.
Unsurprisingly the reason both shows were cancelled relates to the ongoing global issue.
At the moment it's unclear what will happen with the majority of the bouts set for the two shows, which included a Japanese Super Flyweight title bout between Kenta Nakagawa (18-3-1, 12) [中川 健太] takes on Yuta Matsuo (15-4-2, 8) [松尾雄太], which was set for May 16th, and the Hajime No Ippo 30th anniversary tournament final, between Shingo Kusano (13-8-1, 5) [草野慎悟] and Daisuke Watanabe (10-4-2, 6) [渡部大介], which was to take place a day late. It's expected both bouts will be postponed, but it's very unclear when they will take place.
Although the current suspension on boxing in Japan didn't directly affect the two shows the regulations being put on gyms for hosting shows would have effected both events, which were meant to be held as part of a boxing festival, as opposed to just a plan boxing show.
As with, we suspect everyone else, we hope the issue taking over global news come to an end sooner rather than later. It obviously effects more than just boxing, and we really hope everyone reading this is staying as safe as they can through these trying and tough times.
It's feeling like the only news we get to cover at the moment is due to on going pandemic, and that's the case again today.
Earlier today the East Japan Boxing Association made a request to the gyms in East Japan to close their doors this weekend, to help control the spread of the virus in the Tokyo metropolitan areas.
For those wondering this will cover most of the bigger name gyms, including the likes of Teiken, Kadoebi, Ohashi, Misako and Watanabe.
Although it's unclear if West Japan will follow suit it does seem quite likely that we will see similar things brought in across Japan if necessary.
This has seemingly been brought along by government advice, with various prefectures urging that citizens don't travel this weekend.
At the moment the April 5th East Japanese Rookie of the Year event is still going ahead, with a West Japan Rookie of the Year card also on the docket for later in April with a stages return to action scheduled for May. Though of course with the current situation being an ever changing one, things may change with very little notice.
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