Earlier today Shinsei Gym put on their latest show under the Real Spirits line of events, with the show taking place at the EDION Arena Osaka, in Osaka City. The card, was an all-female show, featuring 3 notable title fights.
The first of the three title bouts saw Kaoru Iga (6-2-1) [伊賀薫] claim the Japanese Atomweight title as she took a 6 round majority decision win again Natsuki Tarui (4-9-2) [樽井捺月]. Iga took control of this one very early on, dropping Tarui in the opening round with a right hand and establishing herself. Tarui gritted her teeth and battled back hard, getting a toe hold on the action in round 2, but was dropped a second time in round 4 and with two knockdowns in a 6 rounder it was always going to be incredibly tough for Tarui to over-turn the deficit. After 6 rounds the judges had this one 58-54, twice, and 56-56.
The second title bout saw Kanako Taniyama (5-1-1, 1) [谷山佳菜子] retain her Japanese female Bantamweight title, with her first defense, as she easily over-came Miki Mitsuda (5-8, 4) [満田美紀]. From the off Taniyama looked determined to control the bout, and dictate the action. She got behind her jab, kept the fight at range, and whilst Mitsuda had moments of success with her hooks, she could never keep it up whilst Taniyama upped the tempo round after round, and easily did enough to earn the decision, retaining her title and scoring a shut out win. The result her is quite telling as the two fought in 2020, with Mitsuda really pushing Taniyama all the way, with Taniyama sneaking a majority decision, but she really was in total control here.
The third title bout on the show saw Aka Ringo (3-0, 2) [中井麻美] win the WBO Asia Pacific Female Bantamweight title with a TKO win over tough veteran Yuko Henzan (8-12-4, 2) [平安山裕子], who had never previously been stopped. Ringo dropped Henzan in the first round, as she looked to make a statement, and then hurt her in the second round, showing off her power, and forced the referee to step in and save the veteran. This was a showcase from Ringo who was taking a step up, and looked sensational, with a win that should boost her to the fringes of a WBO world title fight in the next year or two.
Yeterday we reported that a planned bout between Etsuko Tada (20-3-3, 7) [多田悦子], the WBO female Minimumweight champion, and Sana Hazuki (8-5-1, 2) [葉月さな] had to be cancelled at the 11th hour due to the WBO stepping in at the request of a Korean promoter. Today the two women took part in a spar at the EDION Arena Osaka, before Tada spoke about her future.
Tada explained that whilst she did only take part in a spar today, she did have fun, and it seemed clear that she wanted to keep the juices flowing before her next bout. We now know that that next bout is being arranged to take place in South Korea, in October, against Vietnamese fighter Thi Thu Nhi Nguyen (4-0, 1), who is the mandatory challenger for Tada and the WBO female Minimumweight title.
If she beats Nguyen, Tada revealed she wants to face Senseia Estrada in the future, with that bout potentially in her sights for 2022. As for Hazuki she revealed that she'd love to face Tada in a fight, rather than a spar, in the future.
Whilst the Tada Vs Hazuki bout was cancelled, the show went ahead with a different title fight. That was an OPBF female Light Flyweight title bout between Yumi Narita (6-4-3, 1) [成田 佑美] and Kaoru Iga (4-2-1) [伊賀 薫].
On paper it seemed like Iga would be the favourite on paper, though it was Narita who pretty much dominated the bout. She relied on her experience, jab, work rate and fighting spirit to take an early lead and never look back. Iga was landing good punches through out the contest, but Narita pressed the action, dictated the tempo and in the end ran out the clear winner as she claimed the title.
After 8 rounds the scores were 79-73 to Narita, twice, and 78-74.
For Narita this leaves her in a strange position. She's now the Japanese national champion at 105lbs and the OPBF champion at 108lbs. As for Iga this is going to be a real learning experience for her, and it will be interesting to see how she bounces back from such a wide loss.
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