Earlier this month we were expecting to see Rikito Shiba (5-1, 3) [芝力人] and Shokichi Iwata (6-0, 4) [岩田翔吉] trade blows for the vacant Japanese Light Flyweight title, in what looked like a fantastic match up. Sadly however the bout was cancelled on the day of the weigh in when Iwata tested positive for Covid19, forcing the bout to be abandoned at the 11th hour, and forcing Teiken to refund tickets whilst holding a show that ended up having just 2 bouts on it.
Thankfully the bout being off appears to have been a short term issue, and earlier today the bout had a new date announced for it, with the announcement that the bout would be taking place on November 6th, as the main event of November's Diamond Glove show.
After testing positive for Covid19 earlier this month Iwata under-went a period of isolation, though suffered no symptoms, and as soon as his quarantine was over he returned to the gym. As a result he's expected to be in 100% fully fit condition come November.
Interestingly the bout has replaced a previously announced bout between Takeshi Inoue (17-1-1, 10) [井上 岳志] and Rei Nakajima (4-1) [中島玲] as the main event of the show, though that was cancelled earlier this month when Inoue was offered a November 17th date with unbeaten Australian hopeful Tim Tszyu (19-0, 15), and understandably took the much, much bigger bout with Tszyu.
Back in July we saw Kyonosuke Kameda (7-2-1, 6) [亀田 京之介] claim the Japanese Youth Featherweight title, stopping the previously unbeaten Tsubasa Narai (7-1, 6) [奈良井 翼] in 2 rounds to claim the title in what was a genuinely entertaining, though short lived, bout. Since then things have been quiet regarding Kameda's future. At least they were prior to this past weekend when it was announced that Kameda will defending his title for the first time on November 13th at the EDION Arena Osaka, in Osaka City.
The hard hitting champion, the cousin of the three fighting Kameda brothers, will be up against former Rookie of the Year winner Hiroki Hanabusa (8-2-3, 3) [英洸貴] in what looks like a solid first defense.
Kameda, as mentioned the cousin of Koki, Daiki and Tomoki Kameda, has come a long way since being stopped in his professional debut, back in 2018. He doesn't look like a world champion in the making but at 22 years old he certainly seems to have the tools needed to compete high up the domestic rankings, and perhaps even win a Japanese title down the line. He does however have a lot of work to do for that to happen, and we suspect the next few years will be key for his development, with the Youth title being a major part of that.
Hanabusa on the other hand is someone who is struggling for form recently. He won Rookie of the Year in 2018, but has gone 3-2-1 (1) since then and struggled to really show what he can do. He challenger for the Japanese Youth Super Bantamweight title in 2020, but was stopped in 5 rounds by the criminally under-rated Toshiki Shimomachi, and was beaten by Katsuya Fukui earlier this year. Thankfully for him those two losses have come to excellent fighters, and in some ways can be dismissed as simply being against fighters who are just too good, but another loss here will be very hard to bounce back from.
On paper this should be a match up between the boxing skills of Hanabusa, who is a very nice tidy boxer, and the power and physicality of Kameda. As a result this could end up being a very interesting bout where Hanabusa could look levels above, but always be walking the proverbial tight rope.
Earlier today former 3 weight world champion Kosei Tanaka (15-1, 9) [田中恒成] announced his long awaited return to the ring, and instead of taking an easy fight following his first loss, he's set to take on a former world title challenger in a very interesting and tough contest.
Tanaka, who was last seen losing to WBO Super Flyweight champion Kazuto Ioka (27-2, 15) [井岡一翔] at the very end of 2020, will be returning on December 11th to take on Sho Ishida (29-2, 15) [石田 匠] in a bout set to take place in Nagoya.
The full details of the event haven't yet been confirmed, but Tanaka did announce all the details regarding this bout. It will be a 10 round bout, fought at a contracted 52.5KG's (115.7lbs), held at the Nagoya Congress Center, and will be aired by CBC in Japan from 4PM local time. At the moment it's unclear on whether the bout is going to be shown through out Japan, with CBC just airing in the Chukyo region, though sources are suggesting the bout will be streamed across Japan and picked by some international TV channels.
Tanaka's promoter Kiyoshi Hatanaka announced that at the moment no decision has been made regarding spectators. Instead he explained that a decision will be made a month before the bout, with it being dependent on the coronavirus situation in November.
Regarding the bout and his ability, Tanaka spoke about how he has learned more about boxing, focusing on his offense and defense and really developing since the loss to Ioka. He also spoke about his brother, Ryomei Tanaka, and how Ryomei did at the Olympics, winning bronze, and about how he intends to become a 4 weight world champion, after this bout with Ishida.
As for Ishida, who gave comments through the Ioka Gym, he thanks Kazunori Ioka for the opportunity, and explained this was his third chance. He explained that he will be preparing for this like he would a world title fight and feels it could be his last chance. His game plan will be aiming for a KO.
Interestingly Ishida and Kazuto Ioka used to be stablemates, and Ishida's promoted is Kazuto's father, they'll be looking to follow in Kazuto's footsteps and beat Tanaka here.
Earlier this month we reported that former world title challenger Shohei Omori (21-4, 16) [大森 将平] has announced he was retiring from the sport, following his December loss to Ryosuke Nishida (4-0, 1) [西田凌佑]. Today that retirement become a true reality as Omori took part in a retirement ceremony in Kyoto City, climbing into the ring for the final time.
The 28 year old, who was born in Kyoto and made his name fighting out of the Woz Gym in the local area, spoke about how he had turned professional at the age of 18 and fought for a decade as a professional. He explained how he had worked hard to be a professional fighter, but decided to call time on his career as he could no longer get up for the sport, and it seemed very much like his motivation to compete was just gone.
Despite retiring Omori thanked those who had supported him, and stated that he wanted to give back in his future career, though didn't explain what he was planning to do in the next chapter of his life.
We would love to wish Omori all the best in his exploit away from boxing, and at the age of 28 he certainly has a lot of time to do what he wants with life.
Whilst a lot of focus on Japanese boxing tomorrow will be on Kyoto, there is actually a smaller card in Tokyo, thanks to Dangan. The scheduled main event for the card was supposed to be a bout between former Japanese Featherweight champion Taiki Minamoto (16-7-1, 13) [源大輝] and the under-rated Shingo Kusano (13-9-1, 5) [草野慎悟], in what looked like a mouth watering match up.
Sadly that match up was cancelled earlier today, when Shingo Kusano tested positive for Covid19 with a PCR test taken around the time of the weigh in.
Thankfully this bout is being rescheduled, and has been pencilled in for December 2nd, with Minamoto taking part in a public sparring session tomorrow at Korakuen Hall due to Kusano's test.
Sadly this wasn't the only issue with this show, and wasn't originally scheduled in as the main event. That was a planned bout between Hironori Mishiro (10-0-1, 3) [三代大訓] and Kazuhiro Nishitani (21-5-1, 12) [西谷和宏], which was cancelled when it was clear Mishiro wouldn't be fit for the contest, several weeks ago. As result of two notable bouts being cancelled for his show, we are now left with a main event between Ayaka Miyao (23-9-2, 6) [宮尾綾香] and Kaori Nagai (6-2-3, 2) [長井香織].
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