Earlier today the "BOXING REAL" YouTube channel streamed 3 bouts from the Green Tsuda promoted "Crash Boxing Vol 20 in Hirakata". Although those 3 bouts didn't last long they were all notable, and all allowed a different fighter to shine, and managed to all be rather entertaining bouts.
The first of the 3 bouts to be shown was a show between 2019 All Japan Rookie of the Year winner Jinki Maeda (5-0, 3) [前田稔輝] and the hard hitting Arashi Iimi (7-3, 7) [飯見嵐]. On paper this looked an excellent test for for Maeda, but in turned into a show case of his speed, movement and timing.
The unbeaten southpaw dropped Iimi in the first round with a gorgeous. short left hand, and showed the skills that had seen him shine in the Rookie of the Year last year. Iimi wasn't hurt by the knockdown, but it showed that Maeda had the tools to shine. Iimi got back to his feet and saw out the round with no issues. Unfortunately for him the same couldn't be said for round 2. He was dropped again by a left hand early in the round and then dropped a third time later in the round 2, before the referee decided enough was enough.
Given this looked like a genuine test for Maeda on paper this was a really impressive result, and it's maybe time to sit and take notice of a really promising young fighter from the Green Tsuda gym. He looked truly brilliant here.
Talking about looking brilliant we really doubt we have enough superlatives to explain how sensational Japanese Youth Super Bantamweight champion Toshiki Shimomachi (12-1-2, 8) [下町俊貴] looked. Shimomachi was making the first defense of his title and was supposed to be given pushed hard by the unbeaten Hiroki Hanabusa (8-1-3, 3) [英洸貴]. Instead the bout was a showcase for Shimomachi who dazzled with his movement, and looked as slippery as an oiled up eel swimming through KY Jelly.
The first round was a rather slow one, with both men showing off some great skills, but little of value being landed. From there on however it became Shimomachi's time to shine, with the 23 year old showing off what a brilliant, smart, educated defensive fighter he was. He was making Hanabusa miss time and time again, landing his own shots in response and showing a slick style we don't often see in Japan. This almost like he'd be spending time at a Cuban boxing school with some of the moves he was showcasing, and was totally befuddling Hanabusa with. To his credit Hanabusa was coming forward and applying pressure, but was left looking like an amateur at times due to the defense of Shimomachi.
By round 4 it was clear Shimomachi could toy with his challenger. That however would have gotten dull, and instead he stopped playing with his food in round 5. Part way through the round a brilliant body shot from Shimomachi dropped Hanabusa. The bout could probably have been waved off there, but Hanabusa's fighting heart saw him beat the count. Soon after the mandatory 8 counter Shimomachi jumped on his man and forced the finish.
We really can't explain how impressed we were by what we saw from Shimomachi here, and those who like slick, defensive fighters need to give him a watch. We knew he was good, but today he took it to a new level. Fingers crossed we see him take another step forward later in the year.
The final bout saw former Japanese Welterweight champion Ryota Yada (20-6, 17) [矢田良太] sending the local fans home happy with a win over Takuya Fujii (7-6, 3) [藤井 拓也].
Yada, who was born in Hirakata, started slowly, but rocked Fuji with pretty much every punch he landed. He threw very little in the first 3 rounds, with Fujii being allowed to come forward, but what he did throw landed and landed hard.
In round 4 we began to see the "Terminator of Naniwa", as Yada moved out of first gear and dropped Fuji hard towards the end of the round. Fujii got to his feet, but ended up bundled down moments fore the bell. It seemed like the bell hadn't so much saved him, was delaying the inevitable.
After the bell to start round 5 Fujii was inspected by the doctor, who ruled that Fujii wasn't fit to continue. The stoppage was down to an injury with Fujii's left leg, that had occurred when he he was knocked down. To his credit it seemed Fujii tried to hide it, but it was clear after the stoppage that the referee made the right call, and Fujii did have a very clear hobble in the moments that followed.
Whilst Yada's bout wasn't expected to be competitive it was great to see him shaking the demons of his 2019 loss to Yuki Beppu, in what was an instant classic. As for Maeda and Shimomachi, they looked brilliant and Green Tsuda have two potential stars of the future there, both of the youngsters looked tremendous and we are really looking forward to seeing them both back in the ring as soon as possible.
With very few events in Japan hosting a crowd, and those that do only having limited crowds, one thing we've started to see is promoters beginning to have events streamed live on YouTube. We saw this twice in July and we're now set to get it this coming weekend with Green Tsuda today announcing some of their event "Crash Boxing Vol 20 in Hirakata" was being live streamed on August 9th.
The announcement revealed that the "BOXING REAL" channel on YouTube will show the 2 main bouts live, and one under-card bout, and will then host the under-card bouts the following day.
The bouts which will be streamed live will be the main event bout between Ryota Yada (19-6, 16) [矢田良太] and Takuya Fuji (7-5, 3) [藤井 拓也], the chief support bout, between Japanese Youth Super Bantamweight champion Toshiki Shimomachi (11-1-2, 7) [下町俊貴] and Hiroki Hanabusa (8-0-3, 3) [英洸貴] and a mouth watering match up between Jinki Maeda (4-0,2 ) [前田稔輝] and Arashi Iimi (7-2, 7) [飯見嵐],
For Yada the bout will be his first since his 2019 epic with Yuki Beppu, that saw both men being dropped, hurt, rocked and Yada being, eventually, stopped. On paper he will be the big favourite, but it's fair to say that the bout with Beppu is one that could leave him a damaged fighter. Fuji on the other hand is fighting for just the second time since 2015.
As for the title bout the contest will be Shimomachi's first defense of the title and will see Hanabusa looking to claim his first belt. We've previewed this bout in a lot more detail here "Shimomachi takes on Hanabusa in Youth title defense!"
The bout between Maeda and Iimi will see Maeda look to build on his 2019 Rookie of the Year triumph, in which he beat Kyonosuke Kameda, whilst Iimi will be hoping to bounce back from a loss last year to Kenta Nomura. For those wanting to know more about Maeda he was actually the focus of this week's "Introducing" article, which can be read here Introducing... Jinki Maeda
For those needing a link to the channel that's here, and they currently have videos from the "REAL Spirits Vol 67" show they streamed in July, for those wanting to know what the quality is going to be like.
One more thing to note bout this show is that the scheduled bout between Takayuki Okumoto (23-9-4, 11) [奥本貴之] and Tulio Kuwabata (3-1, 2) [桑畑凜生] will not be taking place, and was cancelled several weeks ago. This means the show will only have 4 under-card bouts, and not 5, as some sites list.
Earlier today Japanese fight fans saw what was essentially a Japanese youth title eliminator at Super Bantamweight, as the hard hitting Arashi Iimi (7-2, 7) [飯見嵐] clashed with Kenta Nomura (6-2, 3) [野村健太], with the winner of this match up getting a shot against Toshiki Shimomachi (9-1-2, 5) [下町俊貴] for the vacant title later in the year.
Coming in Iimi seemed the favourite. He was the bigger puncher and was the the 2017 East Japan Rookie of the Year winner, having lost in the all-Japan final to Shimomachi at Korakuen Hall. Surprisingly however he was upset, and upset quickly!
Nomura looked confident early and pressed behind his jab, dictating the pace completely behind his lead hand, and getting in and out with no problems. In round 2 Nomura dropped his man, twice, with the towel coming in to save Iimi mid way through the round.
Whilst the loss costs Iimi a chance to avenge his first loss, it does set up an interesting looking match between Shimomachi and Nomura, a match up that became very interesting given how easily Nomura stopped Iimi.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today saw the announcement of 3 Japanese Youth title eliminator bouts, as the JBC title pictures at Light Flyweight and Super Bantamweight get sorted out.
The Super Bantamweight division had one eliminator announced, a bout between Arashi Iimi (7-1, 7) [飯見嵐], the 2017 East Japan Rookie of the Year winner, and Kenta Nomura (5-2, 2) [野村健太]. These two youngsters will battle on April 1st at the Diamond Glove show. The winner of this match up will then face Toshiki Shimomachi (9-1-2, 5) [下町俊貴] for the vacant title later in the year.
The Light Flyweight division will have two bouts taking place, in what are essentially tournament semi-final bouts for the vacant title, with the winners fighting for the belt later in the year.
One of those bouts will take place on the April 11th Diamond glove card, and will see Rikito Shiba (2-0, 1) [芝力人] battle Hizuki Saso (10-5-1, 3) [佐宗緋月], in a really interesting contest. Shiba was a former amateur standout, who has really exciting since turning professional Saso is much more experienced, and comes into this bout on the back of solid wins over Jeffrey Galero and Desierto Nagaike.
The other Light Flyweight semi-final bout will see the exciting Tsuyoshi Sato (8-1-1, 4) [佐藤剛] take on the big punching Tetsuya Tomioka (5-3, 5) [富岡哲也] in what should be a real war. Sato has a really fun, aggressive style whilst Tomioka is a stop or be stopped fighter, who has only lost to highly regarded fighters in the form of Junto Nakatani, Katsunori Nagamine and Ryuto Oho. This bout will be held on April 6th.
Both of these bouts at 108lbs are really hard to call, though any combination in the final should give us something really special.
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