Earlier today at the Korakuen Hall fans saw former world title challenger Ryohei Takahashi (17-4-1, 7) [高橋竜平] bounce back from his loss to TJ Doheny earlier in the year.
The Japanese fighter was up against Korean visitor Jin Wook Lim (10-7-5, 3) [임진욱] and the difference in class showed early on.
Takahashi's foot work and aggression was key in the early going, pressing the fight and forcing Lim to fight at a harder pace. Although Lim had some moment he taking more than he was giving and he was hurt in round 4 as Takahashi body shots began to take a toll. Those body shots continued in round 5 with Lim returning in his corner between rounds 5 and 6.
Also on this card was a win for Naoki Mochizuki (16-4, 8) [望月直樹], who took an 8 round decision win over former world title challenger Samartlek Kokietgym (34-10-1, 12). The Thai visitor, who has previously fought Akira Yaegashi and Naoya Inoue for world titles, was unable to really get into the fight against the bigger, stronger, more powerful Mochizuki, who won a very clear decision over the Thai veteran.
(Image courtesy of boxmnob.jp)
Tomorrow fight fans at the Korakuen Hall will see former world title challenger Ryohei Takahashi (15-4-1, 6) [高橋竜平] battle against Korean Jin Wook Lim (10-6-5, 3) [임진욱], in what will be Takahashi's first bout since losing to TJ Doheny earlier this year.
Today the two men took part in their weigh in for the contest and both men weighed in just under 122lbs for the bout, whilst looking in pretty good shape.
Despite both making weight, it should be be noted that the Korean was originally quite a bit over the limit and needed to step on the scales to make weight for the contest.
Takahashi revealed that he had thought about quitting the sport following his loss to Doheny, but revealed that had he done so he would have gone on to regret it. Instead he is aiming to win a national title and, in the future, return to fighting on the big stage.
(Image courtesy of Nikkan Sports)
We've known for a while that there was plans to put on a card at Korakuen Hall on June 11th, though the full line up hasn't yet been announced. What we are hearing though are that their may be two former world title challengers in action on the card, as well as a fighter who is part of a very famous Japanese boxing family.
Sources in Japan and Korea have both stated that Ryohei Takahashi (15-4-1, 6) [高橋竜平], best known for losing in an IBF Super Bantamweight title fight to TJ Doheny earlier this year, will be on the show. The tough Takahashi is set to take on Korean Jin Wook Lim (10-6-5, 3) [임진욱], in what is a bit of a must win for both fighters.
Takahashi's shot at Doheny was an unexpected one, and despite losing he did show great fighting spirit and gave a solid effort against a man several levels better than himself. That loss to Doehny, an 11th round TKO, saw the end of a 5 fight winning run from Takahashi. Lim on the other hand was stopped last time out by Jess Rhey Waminal, who stopped him in 9 rounds in a bout for the "interim" WBA Asia Bantamweight title. That was his second stoppage loss, following a 2016 defeat to the then OPBF Super Bantamweight champion Shun Kubo.
The other former world title challenger pencilled in for the show is said to be Thailand's Samartlek Kokietgym (34-9-1, 12), who has previous fought Akira Yaegashi and Naoya Inoue for world titles. Samartlek is pencilled in to face Naoki Mochizuki (15-4, 8) [望月直樹].
For Mochizuki the bout will be his first since losing to Junto Nakatani in a Japanese Flyweight title bout, back in February, Samartlek on the other hand has gone 1-3-1 in his last 5, and is a long way removed from the fighter who went 11 rounds with Inoue back in 2014.
It should be noted that only 1 site has reported the Samartlek bout at the moment, and no site has reported both bouts, so it seems like there is still some confusion on the full line up. We do have have confirmation that 20 year old Kyonosuke Kameda (3-1, 2) [亀田京之介], the cousin to the 3 fighting world champions who share his surname, will be on the show. He will be up against Ryugo Ushijima (3-0, 2) [牛島龍吾], who impressed us earlier this year with his win against Shota Ogasawara. This is a tough bout for Kameda.
The Korean boxing scene is a mess, still, but it finally seems like things are being done to sort the mess out, and on September 7th we'll see a card at the Gijang Gymnasium in Busan being recognised by both the KBF and KBM in what looks to be an agreement for the two bodies to work together, something Korean boxing desperately needs if it's to ever become relevant.
Despite the two organisations working together the card isn't a big one, yet it does have an interesting main event, as former OPBF Super Bantamweight title challenger Jin Wook Lim (10-5-5, 4) [임진욱] battles against Jess Rhey Waminal (11-2-1, 6) for the WBA Asia Bantamweight title, in a bout that both men are likely to give their all in, knowing that it could open up bigger and better doors for them.
Lim is best known for coming up short against his most notable opponents. they include Shun Kubo, who retained the OPBF title against Lim in 2016, and Shohei Kawashima, who took a 10 round decision over the Korean. It's notable they are his only losses in the last 7 years and he has scored notable wins over Sa Myung Noh and Seung Suk Chae, whilst also fighting to a draw with the once promising Ye Joon Kim.
The 23 year old Filipino has lost twice against domestic foes, coming up short in 2015 against Carlo Demecillo and then again last year against the under-rated Ben Mananquil, those losses aside he has looked very promising and beaten the likes of Joe Tejones and Margarito Moya. This will be his first fight outside of the Philippines, and only his second title fight, but he shouldn't be over-looked as he ran Mananquil very close in an OPBF interim title bout last year.
We're expecting this bout to be a really exciting one, and a worth while header on what will be an over-looked card by many.
On May 27th Korean fight fans will get an interesting double header courter of the KBF, along with promotional outfits J. Nine Promotions and Buffalo Promotions. The card, to be held in Busan, isn't the deepest or most interesting but it is a notable one domestically for Korean fight fans and could, potentially, help shape not only the Korean scene at 140lbs and 122lbs but also see a notable player emerge in both divisions for the Oriental scene at large.
The Super Bantamweight bout will see Jin Wook Lim (8-5-5, 2) defending his title against promising 21 year old Yo Han Bae (7-2-2, 1). Of the two fighters Lim is the more experienced and the more well known, having notable faced Satoshi Shimizu in Japan, but Bae has shown the more potential and the youngster will be looking at this bout as his chance to make a statement and claim his first professional silverware.
At 140lbs we'll see Dong Hee Kim (7-1-1, 2) defending his KBF crown against the unbeaten In Duck Seo (8-0, 5). For Kim this will be the first defense of a title he won last year, and he will be looking to stretch an 8 fight unbeaten record following a debut loss. As for Seo this bout will be his first title bout, but the 22 year old does look like a really promising fighter and will see this as a chance to not only claim a Korean belt but also begin to move towards an Oriental title fight.
The show looks set to be shown on MBC Sport in Korea and more details are expected to be made public in the coming weeks,
(Image courtesy of the KBF)
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