At the start of the month the excellent @BarbosaBox revealed details of a Japanese super show set for November 1st, with 3 very notable bouts. Today that card was confirmed as Teiken held a press conference, not just confirming the details from Barbosa box, but also announcing there was a 4th notable bout for the card, as well as details regarding venue, tickets and the Japanese broadcaster for the show.
As originally reported the card is a super show for the lighter fighters, especially the Light Flyweight division with a mouth watering world title double header at 108lbs. The main bout will see WBA Light Flyweight "Super" Champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (16-0, 11) [京口 紘人] take on WBC champion Kenshiro Teraji (19-1, 11) [寺地 拳四朗] in a much anticipated, and highly demanded all-Japanese unification bout, whilst the chief support bout will see unbeaten Japanese fighter Shokichi Iwata (9-0, 6) [岩田 翔吉] challenge WBO world champion Jonathan Gonzalez (26-3-1-1, 14). The two title bouts really are sensational match ups, and could well lead to a triple title unification bout in the new year.
The third bout that had been previous mentioned was a non-title bout between WBO Flyweight champion Junto Nakatani (22-0, 17) [中谷 潤人] and Francisco Rodriguez Jr (36-5-1, 25), with the two men clashing in a 10 rounder at Super Flyweight, giving Nakatani a chance to test the waters at a new weight.
The press conference to announce the show also saw Teiken announce that the unbeaten Shuichiro Yoshino (14-0, 10) [吉野 修一郎] would be defending his WBO Asia Pacific Lightweight title against Masayoshi Nakatani (20-2, 14) [中谷正義], in a bout that will likely put the winner on the verge of a world title fight, whilst the loser will have a long, long way to climb back. Entering the bout both men are world ranked, and both will be sniffing around a shot at the unified Lightweight throne.
The show, which will take place at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, will be broadcast in Japan by Amazon Prime, who continue to put on the most notable shows in Japan and have seemingly found working formula of putting on massive shows in the country, something they could replicate around the globe over the coming years.
It's also now been confirmed that the show will also be broadcast in the US on ESPN+, giving international fans a chance to watch the stacked event.
Takuma Inoue to face Gakuya Furuhashi to unify WBO Asia Pacific and JBC titles!
Earlier today Ohashi gym announced the chief support bout for the much anticipated rematch between Japanese star Naoya Inoue (22-0, 19) [井上 尚弥] and Filipino legend Nonito Donaire (41-6, 27).
That bout, which is set to unify the WBA "Super", IBF and WBC Bantamweight titles on June 7th at the Saitama Super Arena is expected to be a great fight, but the chief support could, somehow, be even more action packed as WBO Asia Pacific Super Bantamweight champion Takuma Inoue (15-1, 3) [井上拓真] takes on Japanese champion Gakuya Furuhashi (28-8-2, 16) [古橋大輔] in an excellent unification bout of regional and national titles.
Of the two men Takuma is the more well known, after all he is Naoya's younger brother and a 3-weight OPBF champion who now looks to be making a name for himself at 122lbs thanks to an excellent win in November against Shingo Wake (27-7-2, 19) [和氣 慎吾]. He's not got the power of the "Monster" but Takuam is a good technical boxer, who has genuine guts, determination and is now starting to fill out his frame, growing into his man strength at the age of 26. He will know a win here will help boost his chances of getting a second world title fighter and with world rankings from the IBF, WBC and WBO he isn't far off another crack at a world title already.
Whilst Takuma is known internationally the same can't be said of Furuhashi, and that's a shame. Furuhashi is a true warrior, a blood and guts fighter, who is one of the most fan friendly fighters on the planet. The 34 year old comes to fight, putting it all on the line every time he's in the ring, with a high pressure, high intensity style that makes him a genuine must watch fighter. He won the Japanese title last year, in his third shot, stopping Yusaku Kuga in a legitimate contender for the 2021 Japanese Fight of the Year, and has defended the title twice since then. He will be looking for his third defense, and the biggest win of his career.
Given the styles of the two men this could be under-whelming if Takuma can keep it at range and play it safe for 12 rounds, but that's a massive ask against someone like Furuhashi, who is full of energy and fire. Furuhashi will look to get inside, take the fight to Inoue and make it into a war, which should make this really exciting, with Inoue looking to respond to Furuhashi's pressure with a higher than typical output.
Fans in Japan wanting to watch this bout, will be able to see it live on Amazon Prime Video
At the end of March Ohashi gym announced that we finally had a date for the rematch between Japanese star Naoya Inoue (22-0, 19) [井上 尚弥] and Filipino legend Nonito Donaire (41-6, 27), with the two men battling to unify the WBA "Super", IBF and WBC Bantamweight titles on June 7th at the Saitama Super Arena. At the time however there was no under-card bouts announced. Today we finally saw some information on the under-card bouts for the show.
One of the bouts now confirmed for that show will see Japanese and WBO Asian Pacific Light Welterweight champion Andy Hiraoka (19-0, 14) [平岡アンディ], a man somewhat known to US audiences after appearing on some Top Rank cards in recent years, defending his Japanese title against the hard hitting Shun Akaiwa (7-3-1, 5) [赤岩俊].
The bout will serve as Hiraoka's second defense of the Japanese title, which he won last year when he stopped Jun Sasaki, though will not see him risking his WBO regional title. Notably coming in to this bout Akaiwa is only by the JBC and not the WBO's regional body, leaving him only eligible for the Japanese title.
Currently ranked by the IBF Hiraoka is slowly moving towards a world title eliminator, and whilst he's certainly not read for the top dogs in the division, the 25 year old is moving his career forward well, and the last year or so have been excellent for him, with notable wins over Rickey Edwards, in the US, along with stoppages of Jin Sasaki and Cristiano Aoqui, whilst getting rounds, experience and clearly developing his skill set.
As for Akaiwa he's getting this bout on the back of a big domestic win in March against Hokuto Matsumoto. Despite that win he will be a massive under-dog, especially given his 2020 loss to Jin Sasaki, who stopped him in just 45 seconds, but being the under-dog is normal for Akaiwa, who has upset Matsumoto and Kenta Endo in the past.
For fans in Japan wanting to watch this bout, it's expected to be shown as part of the Amazon Prime Video broadcast of the show, though as of yet no Western broadcaster(s) has been confirmed.
Earlier today there was huge press conference in Japan to announce the much anticipated rematch between Japanese star Naoya Inoue (22-0, 19) [井上 尚弥] and Filipino legend Nonito Donaire (41-6, 27), in a bout to unify the WBA "Super", IBF and WBC Bantamweight titles.
The bout will take place on June 7th at the Saitama Super Arena, the same venue that hosted the first bout between the two men, back in the WBSS Bantamweight Final in 2019, a bout dubbed the "Drama in Saitama", and will see Amazon Prime Video show casing the bout in Japan, with the broadcast set to be their second world title bout in the country, following on from the April 9th clash between IBF Middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin (41-1-1, 36) [Геннадий Геннадьевич Головкин] and WBA "Super" Middleweight champion Ryota Murata (16-2, 13) [村田 諒太]. Interestingly it was reported back in January that Amazon Prime were interested in the bout, and it seems they are committed to showcasing the biggest names in Japanese boxing, though at the moment no international broadcasters have been announced. It could be that Amazon Prime will look to retain all rights and broadcast it internationally, which would be a huge statement of intent by the service to get involved in boxing, or we could see Sky Sports in the UK and ESPN in the US showing the fight.
At the press conference today Inoue was join in attendance by promoter Hideyuki Ohashi and his trainer, and father, Shingo Inoue.
At the event Inoue explained that he wasn't focused on the WBC title, a title currently held by Donaire, but instead on defeating Donaire. And also added that he's potentially going to move up in weight after this bout. Originally the hope was to secure a showdown with WBO champion Johnriel Casimero, though with Casimero needing to fulfil mandatory obligations, it now looks highly unlikely that that bout will ever take place, at least at Bantamweight.
Although wasn't at the event in person he was still there in spirit, delivering a video message as part of it and swore revenge for the result of their first bout, adding that he wanted to "Hunt the monster". He also spoke about how his speed and power have returned and that the first bout with Inoue was a big lesson, and that he had learned from that loss.
Interesting Inoue also revealed some details of his training came, which will begin in the second half of April. Among the more interesting details were the fact he named the two guys he's going to be sparring with to prepare for Donaire. One of those is Genesis Servania (34-3, 16) whilst the other will be Japanese Youth Super Bantamweight champion Ryuya Tsugawa (9-1, 5) [津川 龍也].
Earlier today huge news broke from Japan, with the announcement of a monster show on April 9th at the Saitama Super Arena, featuring two world title fights, and a huge domestic clash between a former triple crown champion and a former world champion.
The headline bout was the previously scheduled Middleweight super fight between IBF Middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin (41-1-1, 36) [Геннадий Геннадьевич Головкин] and WBA "Super" Middleweight champion Ryota Murata (16-2, 13) [村田 諒太], which was originally meant to take place late last year before covid regulations forced the bout to be postponed.
At the announcement of the bout, which was a press conference in Tokyo, Murata spoke about not having had a fight for 2 years, and spoke about the strength of Golovkin, explaining that he was a great fighter and that he deserves respect. He also spoke about how he has done a lot of sparring for this bout, due to the delay, and it seemed very clear that he, and his team, have been focused on coming up with a gameplan to defeat "GGG".
Golovkin, was wasn't able to attend the press conference, shared his views on the bout, giving the following message. "I am delighted that the match has been decided. I would like to thank the Japanese organizers for their efforts in this match. Ryota Murata is wonderful. Champion. Fans in Japan and around the world will see an exciting match. We look forward to returning to the ring. And to the Japanese, the "Big Drama Show" will deliver."
The Golovkin Vs Murata bout wasn't the only world title bout announced, with WBO Flyweight champion Junto Nakatani (22-0, 17) [中谷 潤人] defending his title, for the second time, and taking on domestic challenger Ryota Yamauchi (8-1, 7) [山内涼太], himself the WBO Asia Pacific champion. This is a notable change from Nakatani's previously scheduled bout, which was supposed to be against Mexican challenger Cristian Gonzalez (14-1, 4), but that was cancelled due to Covid restrictions in Japan.
For Nakatani this is a great chance to enhance his already glowing reputation as one of the rising stars of Japanese boxing. He won his title in impressive fashion, before making his US debut last year against Angel Acosta, on ESPN. As for Yamauchi this will be his first world title fight, and comes in just his 10th profession al bout. Although the challenger is aggressive, talented and exciting, he will, quite clearly, be th eunder-dog here.
The third major bout announced for this card was a bout that was planned for the original Golovkin Vs Murata show, and that's a bout between former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (27-3-1, 15) [伊藤 雅雪] and former Lightweight triple crown champion Shuichiro Yoshino (13-0, 10) [吉野 修一郎], in what could be the show stealing bout.
Notably the card is expected to be shown on DAZN around the world, with Amazon Prime carrying the bout in Japan, as they begin their much anticipated foray into boxing.
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