There's not much news for us to report, still, due to issues affecting the entire globe and obviously limiting the amount of boxing that is going on. Sadly the news we do get tends to be disappointing news, and that's the case again today.
Today we have been informed that Slugfest 14, the Kadoebi promoted show that expected to take place on May 19th as the show of boxing's potential return to Japan, has now been postponed.
The show has been pushed back from May 19th to June 18th, though it now seems likely the show will have other changes potentially made to is before it takes place.
As we seem to be saying a lot recently, things are very much ever changing at the moment, though to see this show pushed back this early would suggest we're to expect some more rather substantial changes in the Japanese boxing calendar in the coming weeks.
Earlier today news broke that former amateur stand out, and very promising professional prospect, Masahiro Suzuki (4-0, 2) [鈴木雅弘] has transferred from the World Sport Boxing Gym and signed with the Kadoebi Gym.
Suzuki, who impressed massively on debut when he stopped Antonio Siesmundo, is tipped for major success and we expect this move to be a good one.
Interestingly this sees Suzuki joins the gym that also manages his brother, Toshihiro Suzuki [鈴木 稔弘]. Toshihiro is a Youth Olympic Silver Medal winner and as we often see when fighters fight in the same gym it can help both improve their performances and moral, with a bit of friendly competition.
Of course with the Japanese boxing scene currently on hiatus it's unclear when either of the Suzuki brothers will be in action, though we're looking forward to seeing both, when we finally see the suspension of boxing lifted in the country.
The string of Japanese amateurs turning professional keeps on coming with a fourth fighter announcing he was turning professional in the space of 48 hours!
This time it was Jun Ikegawa [池側純], who announced he was leaving the amateur vests behind, as he joined Ryutaro Nakagaki [中垣 龍汰朗], Toshihiro Suzuki [鈴木稔弘] and Keisuke Matsumoto [松本圭佑] in announce he was turning professional.
Ikegawa will be joining up with Toshihiro Suzuki as new Kadoebi gym fighter.
Ikegawa was the former captain of a top Japanese university boxing team and a close friend of current 2-weight world champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (14-0, 9) [京口 紘人].
Unlike Nakagaki and Matsumoto, who both turned professional with the Ohashi Gym. it's not totally clear when Ikegawa will make his debut, but like the Ohashi gym pair we him, and Suzuki, to be moved very quickly and aggressively over the next couple of years.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today during Kadoebi's "Slugfest 12" show there was a number of fighters announcing their next bouts, set for Slugfest 13 on February 17th.
The main event will see Filipino power puncher Froilan Saludar (31-3-1, 22) return to Japan to make his first defense of the WBO Asia Pacific Super Flyweight title. In the opposite corner to Saludar will be fellow puncher Ryoji Fukunaga (11-4, 11) [福永亮次], in what looks likely to be a very explosive encounter.
Saludar made a splash in September when he won the title with a brutal KO win over Tsubasa Murachi, and extended his winning run to 3 bouts following a 2018 loss to Sho Kimura in a WBO Flyweight world title bout in China. It was an impressive performance from Saludar after many had written him due to the Kimura loss, ourselves included, and the win has genuinely kept his career alive.
Fukunaga on the other hand is a hard man to get a solid read on. He won the 2016 Rookie of the Year, but has gone 4-2 since then with his wins come against very poor opponents and his losses coming to solid, but unspectacular, foes. He can certainly bang but it's hard to know what he'll offer against a fighter of Saludar's ability and experience.
Also confirmed for this show, though currently opponent-less, Ryota Yamauchi (5-1, 4) [山内涼太], who looks to build on Augusts's win over Alphoe Dagayloan, and Ayato Hiromoto (2-0, 1) [廣本彩刀], who competes in his first 8 rounder.
One other thing to note is that Japanese veteran Takuya Kogawa (30-6-1, 13) [粉川拓也] is looking to make his return on the following "Slugfest" card, pencilled in for March. The details here are less fleshed out however and we suspect he'll be in a supporting bout against a limited visiting opponent.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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