Earlier today at the Korakuen Hall fans saw an enthralling Japanese Flyweight title bout between the all-action Takuya Kogawa (24-4, 13) and the tough as nails Hiroki Saito (9-5, 5).
The bout was to find a new champion after the title had been stripped from Suguru Muranaka, who failed to make weight for a title defense earlier this year. And find a new champion it did, as Kogawa, who had the title prior to Muranaka defeating him in December 2013, reclaimed it in style.
From the off these two set a great pace with Saito, a tough and heavy handed fighter, coming forward and trying to walk down the energetic Kogawa, who was relentlessly throwing shots at Saito in an attempt to slow his foe. The action, through 5, was great and competitive though did see the judges favouring the work rate of the veteran, who was leading 48-47, 49-46, 49-46 at the mid-way point.
The second half of the fight was much the same with Saito landing the heavier, more bruising shots though being out worked round after round. It was a case of both men doing what they do best.
Sadly for Saito he lacked the power to ever have the tough Kogawa in real trouble though he did make Kogawa work incredibly hard en route to claiming the decision win, with scores of 97-93, 98-92 and 98-92.
Saito will come again. His record certainly doesn't reflect his ability and he's a handful for anyone domestically. As for Kogawa he's likely to look for bigger fights, possibly a rematch with Muranaka, though is unlikely to vacate until a big fight comes along.
(Image courtesy boxingnews.jp)
Earlier today in Japan saw the weigh ins for tomorrow's show at the Korakuen Hall.
Among those take part in the weigh were the main event fighters for tomorrow's card, Takuya Kogawa (23-4, 13) and Hiroki Saito (9-4, 5), who meet in a 10 round bout for the vacant Japanese Flyweight title.
The weigh in had real interest after the title became vacant due to Suguru Muranaka's failure to make weight ahead of his scheduled defence against Tetsuma Hayashi earlier this year. Thankfully both men in action tomorrow made the limit.
Not only did both men make the 112lb limit but both looked in incredible shape for the bout which really does promise to be an all out war between an all action fighter and a tough heavy handed guy.
Coming into the bout Kogawa is looking to regain a title he has previously held whilst Saito is looking for the biggest win of his career.
Kogawa meets Saito in potential war for Japanese crown!
(Image courtesy boxingnews.jp)
Earlier today it was announced that the always fun to watch Takuya Kogawa (23-4, 13) would be facing the in form Hiroki Saito (9-4, 5) on July 17th, at "DANGAN134", in a bout for the vacant Japanese Flyweight title.
The title, which became vacant earlier this year after Suguru Muranaka came in over-weight for his bout with Tetsuma Hayashi, is being contest by the top 2 Japanese ranked contenders with Kogawa, a former champion, entering the bout as the #1 contender and Saito as the #2 ranked contender.
We've known about this match up for a while though we were awaiting the announcement in regards to a date. With the bout now just about 7 weeks away we have to say we are pretty excited, as we always are when Kogawa is set to step in to the ring.
Kogawa is a former holder of the title, incidentally losing it to Muranaka in a really fun to watch bout back in 2013. Coming in to the bout he is 1-2 though those losses came in the Muranaka bout, via split decision, and to the then WBA interim Flyweight champion Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep, in a very unfortunate majority decision loss. His sole win during his last 3 bouts was a decision against Hiroyuki Hisataka, fought well above his natural Flyweight division.
Whilst Kogawa has been struggling for wins over the last 18 months or so Saito has really been in great form, and in fact his record is a genuinely misleading one. He has won his last 3 bouts, including a big win last November over Jo Tanoka, and genuinely rebuild his career after a 6-4 start. On paper that sounds like a poor start to a career but when you consider Saito's most recent losses came to Muranaka, Hayashi and future OPBF title challenger Yuki Fukumoto.
Of course it's hard to back Saito here, but he's clear a live under-dog and hasn't got the miles on the clock that Kogawa has. On paper it looks a mismatch but in reality this is a fantastic match up and well worth the status as the main event come July 17th.
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