This past weekend fans saw a notable show in Singapore, thanks to Ringstar Management who put on 6 title fights.
The bouts weren't the best, but they did show case some notable talent from the region.
Among those involved was former 2-weight world champion Sirimongkol Singwancha (92-3, 57) [ศิริมงคล สิงห์วังชา], who claimed the UBO InterContinental Light Middleweight title as he over-came Indonesian Larry Siwu (24-9, 20) with a split decision. The Thai 39 year old looked his age towards the end of the bout, but had done enough to earn the win by the end.
Malaysian fighter Muhammad Meeraj (6-2, 3) came up short against Chase Haley (4-1, 1) in a bout for the UBO InterContinental Light Heavyweight and IBO Meeraj was dropped early but battled back to drop Haley in round 5, though couldn't do enough to gain the win.
In a battle of veterans Tommy Browne (34-6-2, 13) saw off Alexander Bajawa (41-4-4, 14) in 3 rounds, and claimed the UBO International Light Middleweight title. Bajawa was well over the limit here, but even that didn't help against Browne who was too good, too powerful and too strong.
Restoring a bit of Indonesian pride was Stevie Ongen Ferdinandus (25-13-1, 12), who claimed the IBO Asia Pacific Welterweight title with a unanimous decision win over the previously unbeaten Cairo George (12-1, 6), despite being deducted a point in round 5 for holding.
In a good competitive Light Heavyweight bout we saw Canadian Ryan Ford (12-0, 7) retain his unbeaten record and defend the UBO Light Heavyweight title with a 7th round technical decision over Robert Berridge (29-7-1, 21), with Berridge being cut by the head clash.
For local fans the big attraction was local star Muhamad Ridhwan (8-0, 7) who shone as he claimed the UBO Super Featherweight title and took a 4th round TKO over the usuually durable Fadhili Majiha (20-9-4, 9). Ridhwan was the naturally bigger fighter here, and that certainly helped him, but credit to all the same and he does appear to be building quite a fan base in Singapore.
(Image courtesy of S odsroi Sawsangvean)
Earlier today Japanese fans at the Korakuen Hall had a genuinely brilliant show.
One of the notable bouts on the card saw former world title challenger Keita Obara (16-2-1, 14) [小原 佳太] return to the ring and go up against Indonesian foe Larry Siwu (24-8, 20) in a Welterweight bout. Obara took the win with a unanimous decision to claim his first career win to go the scheduled distance, with his only other decision being a technical win.
Following his win Obara made it clear he was looking to get a second world title fight.
Another notable veteran on the card was former 2-time Japanese Bantamweight champion Kentaro Masuda (27-7, 15) [益田 健太郎]. Masuda made very light work of Filipino foe Romel Oliveros (8-4-1, 3), who was stopped inside a round. Following the win Masuds seemed to suggest his next target was an OPBF title fight, backing up a story that he has a deal to face Mark John Yap later in the year.
In a minor upset fans saw touted Watnabe gym prospect Motoki Osanai (1-1) [小山内幹] suffer an unexpected loss to the unbeaten Takeshi Kaneko (5-0-1) [かねこたけし], with Kaenko taking a very well earned decision over the former amateur stand out.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Tomorrow fight fans in Tokyo will see former world title challenger Keita Obara (15-2-1, 14) [小原 佳太] take on Indonesian foe Larry Siwu (24-7, 20) in an interesting looking match up, that will see Obara move up in weight and return to the ring for the first time since September.
Today the two men took part in their weigh in for the contest and both fighters looked in impressiveshape for the contest.
On the scales Siwu was the heavier man, showing that he was the natural Welterweight. He came in pretty much on the Welterweight limit for the contest and looked both ripped and relaxed for the contest, likely knowing that a win here could help him move towards a potential world title fight.
As for Obara he was well under the limit, weighing in not much over 146lbs for the bout. Although he didn't fill out the limit it was clear that he was happier now being able to let his body fill out naturally than being forced to drain down to a limit that his body was uncomfortable with.
(Image courtesy of daily.co.jp)
In recent months it seems like promoters have started to step up their game, and cards that typically only had one one or two good fights now have 3 or 4. That was shown again today when Misako gym announced the next Diamond Glove card, set for April 13th at the Korakuen Hall. And genuinely we feel they could have got two solid cards out of the match ups they have on offer.
The main event will see WBO Asia Pacific Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (20-1-1, 9) [伊藤 雅雪] defending the title against big punching Filipino Lorenzo Villanueva (32-2-1, 28) in a really exciting looking match up. Ito is one of the best pure boxers in Japan, and is and is riding a 4 fight winning run against the likes of Dai Iwai, Shingo Eto and Takuya Watanabe whilst Villanueva is a monster puncher who is best known for his up-and-down bout with Daud Yordan from back in 2012. It's a boxer Vs a puncher and could be a very fun bout.
The chief support bout will see former world title challenger Keita Obara (15-2-1, 14) [小原 佳太] return to the ring and go up against Indonesian foe Larry Siwu (24-7, 20) in a decent looking comeback bout for the former Japanese and OPBF Light Welterweight champion. Notably this bout will be a 10 rounder at Welterweight and could well be Obara finally saying good bye to the Light Welterweight division, which he has struggled to make for a while.
Another brilliant supporting bout will see former OPBF and Japanese Lightweight champion Yoshitaka Kato (30-7-2, 9) [加藤 善孝] battle the fast rising Shuichiro Yoshino (3-0, 2) [吉野 修一郎]. If Yoshino can get past Kato, even the currently faded version of Kato, it would be a statement and it seems clear that Yoshino's team strongly believe in their man, who was a former amateur stand out.
Another former Japanese champion on this card will be former 2-time Japanese Bantamweight champion Kentaro Masuda (26-7, 14) [益田 健太郎], who will be up against who will be up against the Filipino Romel Oliveros (8-3-1, 3). This bout isn't as good as the three mentioned above but shows that Masuda is keeping busy and it seems likely that those linked to him will push hard for the veteran to get a world title fight before the end of 2017.
A more attractive bout will see former amateur stand out Motoki Osanai (1-0) [小山内幹] return for his second professional bout as he takes on fellow unbeaten Takeshi Kaneko (4-0-1) [かねこたけし]. Osanai was one of a trio of Watanabe gym fighters who had their pro-tests on the same day, with the others being Masataka Taniguchi and Hiroto Kyoguchi, and it seems clear that he has lost time to make up forgiven that the other two are now in title bouts, and we suspect we'll see something a little special from him here.
As with all Diamond Glove cards this will be shown on Fuji TV, on a tape delay basis, but the date and time hasn't yet been set for the broadcast.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier this week saw an announcement regarding the next bout of unbeaten Thai Welterweight Teerachai Kratingdaenggym (33-0, 24) [ถิรชัย กระทิงแดงยิม], which we now know will come on May 28th in Udon Thani, and will be televised on Channel 3SD.
Teerachai, who is world ranked by the WBA, will be up against Indonesian Larry Siwu (22-5, 18)* in what looks like an interesting bout on paper, especially given that Siwu has gone 20-1 in his last 21 bouts dating back more than a decade and is a former Indonesian Lightweight and Welterweight champion as well as the WBO Asia Pacific Welterweight champion. Interestingly however he was stopped in his only previous bout in Thailand, though that was back in 2003.
The unbeaten Thai has been helping Inthanon Sithchamuang (28-7-1, 15) [อินทนนท์ ศิษย์ชะมวง] prepare for his WBA world title bout later this month, against Kohei Kono (31-8-1, 13) [河野 公平] and it seems like this is will be one of the biggest tests for the unbeaten man ahead of a possible world title fight later in the year, with Teerachai known to be chasing a WBA title fight.
For Siwu the chance is to score a notable win, move himself into the WBA ranking sand possibly open the doors to other notable match ups.
*It should be noted that Indonesian records are norotiously incorrect but these figures are as good as we can get.
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