Earlier today Korakuen Hall played host to the latest show from the Ohashi Gym.
The show featured a host of notable bouts on it including notable debutants, several bouts with prospects and a Japanese title fight.
The show started with one of the debutants, as Kenta Yamakawa (1-0) [山川 健太] took a 4 round shut out over Zapp Morimoto (1-2, 1) [ザップ森本] in the opening bout of the show. The bout saw Yamakawa show his jab, his movement, and his variation though out the contest, with Morimoto playing the role of the ideal foil for Yamakawa who looked like a very promising young prospect.
Another debutant on this card was 23 year old Yuya Tanaka (1-0) [田中 湧也], who had to work for a win over 5'11" southpaw Fuya Tomita (7-5, 2) [冨田 風弥]. Tanaka struggled early on with the saw of Tomita and was dropped in round 2 from a right hook of Tomita's. He did however show good composure and rebuilt from the knockdown to control much of the fight on route to taking a decision. It was however a hard earned victory and one that saw a good test for Tanaka, following a 53 amateur career. He learned plenty here, over-came a tough foe and did well against someone who isn't easy to look good against.
Another promising prospect on this card was Ryutaro Nakagaki (2-0-2, 2) [中垣 龍汰朗], who was surprisingly held to a draw by Toma Kondo (8-7-2, 1) [近藤 冬真]. From the off Kondo tried to press the action, and by doing saw he really limited the success Nakagaki could get. Nakagaki looked the better boxer through out, but the pressure and relentlessness of Kondo really stopped the younger man from controlling the action behind his jab, and forced him to fight Kondo's fight. After 8 rounds this was a tough one to score, and that was shown on the scorecards with a card of 78-74 to Nakagaki, a score of 77-75 to Kondo and a 76-76, resulting in a split decision draw.
The first of 3 Japan Vs Thailand bouts saw the once beaten Katsuya Yasuda (9-1, 5) [保田 克也] score a 6th round TKO win over Thai veteran Krai Setthaphon (29-9, 19). The bout was a tough one for Yasuda, who was dropped in the first round, and really struggled to get going early on. Thankfully for him however things did get better for him, and in round 5 he dropped his foe with a right hook. He then closed the show at the start or round 6 with a straight left hand that dropped Krai for a second time and forced the referee to wave the bout off.
The second Japan Vs Thailand bout was more straight forward for the local, as Taku Kuwahara (10-1, 6) [桑原 拓] blasted out Parinya Khaikanha (4-1, 4) in 2 rounds. From the off Kuwahara was quicker, sharper and more accurate, and looked to make the most of his speed. The Thai came to fight however and looked to press the action a lot more in round 2, whilst let him open to a brutal uppercut that dropped him hard, with the referee immediately waving this one off. After the bout Parinya was take out of the ring on a stretcher, whilst Kuwahara revealed he was wanting to fight for a title next, and potentially rematch Japanese champion Seigo Yuri Akui (17-2-1, 11) [阿久井政悟].
The third and final bout in the Japan Vs Thailand match ups saw Japan go 3-0, with Kazuki Nakajima (12-1-1, 10) [嶋 一輝] scoring a 5th round TKO win over former world title challenger Karoon Jarupianlerd (49-12, 23), aka Petchbarngborn Kokietgym. From the opening round Nakajima seemed in control, but took his time, trying to get a read on what the visitor had to offer. In round 5 Nakajima opened up with a series of clean punches, including some big uppercuts, which forced the referee to step in and save the Thai, who has now been stopped 3 times in his career, all in Japan.
In the main event we saw Japanese Light Middleweight champion Makoto Kawasaki (13-8-2, 2) [川崎真琴] retain his title, and record his first defense, as he fought to a draw with Ryosuke Maruki (18-7-2, 13) [丸木凌介]. This really was a bout of two halves, with Kawasaki dominating the early going, using his jab to control the action and the tempo, whilst Maruki had a horribly slow start. This lead to Kawasaki leading the bout 49-46, twice, and 48-47 when the scores were announced after round 5. From round 6 however things really flipped and Maruki pressed the action more, forcing the fight and clawing his way back into the bout, though he did too little to take the win, with all 3 judges scoring this 95-95.
Following the bout Kawasaki revealed he had felt under pressure for his first defense and had potentially over-trained for the bout, whilst Maruki seemed to admit that he wishes he could have started fighting the way he'd finished the bout much earlier.
Earlier today the Ohashi Gym announced the main event of their July 12th Phoenix Battle show, "Phoenix Battle 90", as well some of the under-card fights on the show.
The main event will see Japanese 154lb champion Makoto Kawasaki (13-8-1, 2) [川崎真琴] make his first defense, after winning the title earlier this month. The 37 year old veteran will be facing off with Ryosuke Maruki (18-7-1, 13) [丸木凌介], who is set to get his second shot at the title.
Kawsaki's title win, which came on April 2nd when he beat Koki Koshikawa, saw the veteran score the biggest win of his career, by far though he certainly didn't look incredible in the win and the feeling is that his reign could be short one. As for Maruki, the exciting challenger has previously come up short in a great bout with Nobuyuki Shindo, and was also stopped in a bout for the interim title against Akinori Watanabe. Given the styles of the two men, and their man flaws, it's hard to not anticipate a thrilling action bout here.
Another bout that was announced for this card will see Ryutaro Nakagaki (2-0-1, 2) [中垣龍汰朗] take on Toma Kondo (8-7-1, 1) [近藤 冬真] in a scheduled 8 rounder.
Also on the card will be former OPBF Bantamweight champion Kazuki Nakajima (11-1-1, 9 ) [中嶋 一輝], talented Flyweight Taku Kuwahara (9-1, 5) [桑原 拓], promising Lightweight Katsuya Yasuda (8-1, 5) [保田克也] as well as the debut of promising former amateur standout Yuya Tanaka (0-0) [田中湧也]. At the time of writing, none of these three have had their opponents for their bouts named.
Earlier today Japanese fight fans at Korakuen Hall got an interesting card, headlined by a pair of title bouts, as Hideyuki Ohashi and the Ohashi Gym put on their latest show.
Before the title fights the fans got a very interesting domestic level clash between two really well matched fighters, each looking to move their careers forward, and move towards a major fight of their own. That bout saw Katsuya Yasuda (8-1, 5) [保田克也] suffer his first defeat, as he came up short in a hotly contested battle with recent Japanese Lightweight title challenger Shuma Nakazato (11-2-3, 7) [仲里周磨].
Early on both men looked sharp, and both had some moments, but the most eye catching came from Yasuda, who put Yasuda on the canvas in round 2, in a very messy knockdown. That seemed to slow the action down somewhat and for much of the bout the actually really wasn't too pretty, with Yasuda being to blame much of the messy work, so much so he was deducted a point in round 7. After 8 rounds the judges scorecards were tallied with Yasuda getting the majority decision win, with scores of 76-74, twice, and 75-75.
The first of the title fights was at Super Flyweight, as the unbeaten Masayoshi Hashizume (19-0-2, 11) [橋詰 将義] over-came the under-rated Akio Furutani (9-5, 3) [古谷昭男] to claim the previous vacant OPBF and WBO Asia Pacific Super Flyweight titles.
The bout started with Hashizume looking to control the range and tempo with his sharp jab, but it wasn't long until Furutani started to have success of his own, forcing Hashizume to begin to rely on his movement more. As the early part of the bout developed Furutani began to pressure more, forcing Hashizume into a rough, tough fight that began to develop into a real war as we reached the middle rounds.
After 5 rounds the open scoring came in for the first time, with Furutani leading 48-47 on one card, and Hashizume leading on the other two, 49-46.
Knowing he was behind as we went in to the middle portion of the bout Furutani looked to pick up the pace, and began to drag Hashizume into a war, though to his credit Hashizume's extra class and rounded skills did see him land numerous big left hands as Furutani came forward, and some really good jabs.
The pressure of Furutani lead to some really exciting action in the later stages of the bout, but sadly for him it wasn't enough to take home the win, despite Hashizume looking incredibly tired in the final round. Despite being tired Hashizume continued to dig deep, and his effort was rewarded on the scorecards, with scores of 118-110, 116-112 and 115-113 all in his favour.
The other title bout saw Japanese and WBO Asian Pacific Light Welterweight champion Andy Hiraoka (19-0, 14) [平岡アンディ] scored his first defense, as he stopped Japanese-Brazilian fighter Cristiano Aoqui (16-9-2, 11) [アオキ クリスチャーノ].
From the off Hiraoka looked sharp, and landed several clean southpaw jabs whilst keeping Aoqui at range and easing himself into the bout. Aoqui was trying to press the action and come forward, but was eating jabs as he was coming in, and struggled with the reach, speed and movement of the champion. Despite Aoqui struggling to get close on a consistent basis, he did manage to have some success, and did enough to earn one round, on of the the three scorecards, when the scores were announced after 5 rounds, with those scores being 50-45, twice, and 49-46.
Knowing he was down Aoqui looked to pick up the pace, pressure and press more, whilst looking to land a big single shot. The pressure had success, with him getting inside and landing straights and big uppercuts, as he finally began to have some success. He wasn't turning the bout around, but was certainly having some moments with his aggression. Sadly for him however, the aggression left him taking risks and in round 10 a huge counter left hand from Hiraoka dropped Aoqui hard. The referee immediately waved off the bout, giving Hiraoka the 10th round TKO.
Earlier today Hideyuki Ohashi announced that the Ohashi Boxing Gym would be promoting Phoenix Battle 86th on February 22nd at Korakuien Hall. No only that but it was also confirmed that the show would be a double header, with two notable title bouts on the show.
The first of those title bouts will see the unbeaten Masayoshi Hashizume (18-0-2, 11) [橋詰 将義] take on Akio Furutani (9-4, 3) [古谷昭男] in a bout for the now vacant OPBF Super Flyweight title, which was recent vacated by Ryoji Fukunaga.
This will be Hashizume's second shot at a title, after fighting to a draw with Takayuki Okumoto in a Japanese title fight in 2018, and a win here will see him living up to the early promise he showed, promise that hasn't yet been delivered on. As for Furutani this bout sees him looking to build on recent upset wins over Keisuke Nakayama and Takayuki Okumoto. On paper Hashizume will be the big favourite, but Furutani has won his last 5, with the wins over Nakayama and Okumoto being very impressive and almost certainly giving him a huge boost of confidence coming in to this one.
The other title bout will see Japanese and WBO Asian Pacific Light Welterweight champion Andy Hiraoka (18-0, 13) [平岡アンディ] make his first defense, as he takes on Japanese-Brazilian fighter Cristiano Aoqui (16-8-2, 11) [アオキ クリスチャーノ], who gets his second shot at the Japanese title after having previously challenged Hiroki Okada in 2016.
For Hiraoka the bout will see him looking to build on an excellent win over Jin Sasaki back in January, where he stopped Sasaki in 11 rounds. A win here and it's likely that that Hiraoka will move on to some form of notable international bout, including a possible return to the US where he has fought twice already. As for Aoqui, he will be a major under-dog here, but will know that this is a huge chance for him to score a career defining victory.
As well as the two title bouts, this card is set to feature another notable bout as Katsuya Yasuda (8-0, 5) [保田克也] faces Shuma Nakazato (10-2-3, 7) [仲里周磨] in a mouth watering 8 rounder.
Earlier today fight fans at Korakuen Hall had the latest show in the Phoenix Battle series of shows, which will be aired this coming weekend on Fuji TV. The card featured an OPBF Bantamweight title bout, between Kai Chiba and Kazuki Nakajima as well as a regional unification bout at Featherweight between Musashi Mori and Satoshi Shimizu.
For those wanting to watch this, as live, when it's finally aired, we have included this spoiler warning introduction. Please note that spoilers will begin in the paragraph after the next one. We will include the full undercard results for this show as well as the two main bouts.
The show kicked off with a 6 round bout in the Super Featherweight division which saw the unbeaten Shun Sekine (5-0-1, 3) [関根 駿] battle against Atsuyuki Sato (5-3-2, 3) [佐藤 諄幸] in what was a very hotly contested match up, though that was to be expected given they fought to a draw last November. From the opening round this was a hard one to call, with fantastic back and forth, and every time one man got the advantage the other came back strongly, and turned the tidein what was a genuinely brilliant way to open the show. After 6 rounds the judges were required and they narrowly gave the bout to Sekine, with the unbeaten Sekine taking a majority decision over his foe, with scores of 57-57, 58-57 and 58-56.
The second bout on the show saw JBC ranked Lightweights clash, as the unbeaten Katsuya Yasuda (8-0, 5) [保田 克也] faced off with Tomoki Takada (8-6-2, 5) [高田 朋城]. On paper this looked liek a mismatch, but interestingly Takada had come into the bout higher ranked by the JBC amd Yasuda was regarded as the man stepping up in class, and getting his first real chance to prove himself. And boy did he ever prove what he could do. From the opening round Yasuda looked relaxed, took his time to get a read on Takada and then went to work from round 2, out landing his foe. Takada was put on the back foot, and looked like he was getting the worse of things, though he did land a good counter in round 4. Despite Takada having some success with counters he was left cut later in that round with a straight left hand. That cut caused the bout to be stopped just a round later, following a doctor's inspection. Due to the cut Yasuda got the 5th round TKO at an official time of 2:12.
The third bout on the show saw talented youngster Keisuke Matsumoto (3-0, 3) [松本 圭佑] put in a career best showing, as he destroyed Hiromu Murota (6-5-2, 4) [室田 拡夢] in just 128 seconds. The highly promising Matsumoto had looked shaky in his first two bouts, but looked in control here from the off with sharp 1-2's and some cracking body work. Murota fought back but a 1-2 from Matsumoto dropped his man. To his credit Murota got back to his feet but was dropped again from a hard counter right hand. After the bout he spoke about being happy with his performance, after a bad aftertaste from his first two bouts.
The first of two title bouts on the show saw a new OPBF Bantamweight champion being crowned as Kazuki Nakajima (10-0-1, 8) [中嶋一輝] out pointed Kai Chiba (13-2, 8) [千葉開] over 12 rounds, in a surprisingly dull fight.
Nakajima settled quicker, getting his powerful left hand into play early on. Chiba on the other hand used his footwork, to try and create some space, but struggled to get his own offense off, and looked negative whilst Nakajiam seemed to be the one force the action. What little there was. After 4 rounds the open scoring was announced, with two judges having Nakajima up 40-36 and the third having the bout 39-37.
Knowing he was behind Chiba began to let his hands go more in the middle rounds, in an attempt to swing things his way. Sadly though Nakajima's work increased as Chiba threw more and Chiba's attempt to turn the bout around was essentially sniffed out by the taller, heavier handed Nakajima, who's 1-2 and right hook were telling punches. The attempted fight back from Chiba didn't really close the scores down when they were announced after 8 rounds, with scores of 79-73, twice, and 77-75 all in favour of Nakajima.
Knowing the bout was pretty much in the bag Nakajima began to play safe in the finals stages, whilst Chiba became more aggressive, giving his all in rounds 9, 10 and 11, before Nakajima regained his composure and and took the final round. After 12 rounds the bout was a clear Nakajima win, with scores of 1119-109, 117-111 and 116-112.
The second title bout saw the heavy handed Satoshi Shimizu (10-1, 9) [清水 聡] unify his OPBF Featherweight title with the WBO Asia Pacific title, as he defeated Musashi Mori (12-1, 7) [森 武蔵] and took his first decision victory since turning professional.
Morie started well, getting his jab going, but Shimizu was equal to it, and and as the early stages got going the men regularly exchanged punches up close, in some thrilling moments of action. right through the first third of the fight this was high tempo, and high tension, with Shimizu's power always giving a sense that anything could happen. After 4 rounds the judges were all over the place, with scores of 39-37, each way, and 38-38.
Mori started to go inside and attack the tall body of Shimizu in round 5 but Shimizu was equal to it, responding with his own body shot, as the phone booth war continued. By round 7 however it seemed Shimizu's power was starting to take a toll on Mori and in round 8 Mori was starting to bleed from the nose. After 8 rounds Shimizu was starting to establish himself on the scorecards, leading 78-74, twice, and 77-75, giving him the edge as we went into the final rounds.
It was then that the pace started to slow, as Shimizu started to use his jab, yes he does actually have one!, and conttrolled the range. He was keeping Mori at range, and kept the bout long, which really did neeutralise Mori and his inside work. As a result of this control Shimizu ended up taking a clear decision, with scores of 118-110, twice, and 116-112 to unify the regional titles and move towards a potential world title fight. As for Mori this is a major set back, but at just 21 years old he really does have time on his side to rebuild and come again.
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!