Earlier today Misako Gym announced WBO female Super Flyweight champion Tomoko Okuda (7-2-2, 1) [奥田朋子] would make her first defense on June 29th at Korakuen Hall, as she defends the belt against Miyo Yoshida (14-2) [吉田 実代], the woman she beat for the title last December.
Last year Yoshida went into the bout looking to make her second defense of the title, but came up short in a rough and tough bout with Okuda, who took the belt via a 6th round technical decision.
Given the frustrating ending of the bout, which came when Okuda was left badly cut, a rematch was always a very real possibility, and the decision to get it sorted makes a lot of sense. Even if it does come about 6 months after their first bout, and neither woman was particularly busy in the ring in 2020.
Coming in to this rematch Okuda will be full of confidence, though will be going into Yoshida's back yard of Tokyo, with their first bout taking place in Osaka.
On the other hand Yoshida will be determined to reclaim the title, which she originally won in June 2019, when she beat Casey Morton via a wide 10 round decision.
At the moment no other details of this show have been announced, though the under-card is expected to be revealed in May at the latest. We suspect it will be a strong under-card, or have a strong co-feature, as whilst this is a good bout, it's perhaps not the big fan draw that promoters will be wanting to headline a late summer card.
Earlier today the nominations for the JBC and Tokyo Athletic Press Club Boxing Subcommittee annual awards were announced, with the media being able to vote on the winners, who will be announced later this month. Unlike usual there will not be a big event ceremony, due to the ongoing Covid19 situation.
Sadly Covid19 really did destroy the boxing calendar in Japan and only a handful of top Japanese fighters managed to squeeze a fight into the year. In fact only 3 of the 7 current male world champions managed to fight, and that include a man who won his world title late year.
The fighters nominated for the "Best Fighter" award were those 3 champions that manage to fight last year:
They were WBO Super Flyweight champion Kazuto Ioka (25-2, 14) [井岡一翔]
WBO Flyweight champion Junto Nakatani (21-0, 16) [中谷 潤人]
And unified WBA "super" and IBF Bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue (20-0, 17) [井上 尚弥]
Those 3 champions are also up in the running for the "Skill Award".
The "Special Merit" award sees Junto Nakatani in the running alongside:
Masayoshi Nakatani (19-1, 13) [中谷正義]
and Hironori Mishiro (10-0-1, 3) [三代大訓]
The Effort/Fighting Award short list is
Ryoji Fukunaga (13-4, 13) [福永亮次]
and Kenichi Horikawa (41-16-1, 14) [堀川 謙一]
The KO award has 4 nominees, with Inoue, Ioka, and both Junto and Masayoshi Nakatani.
The newcomer award sees Mishiro up against:
Daishi Nagata (15-2-2, 6) [永田大士]
and Masamichi Yabuki (12-3, 11) [佐藤政道]
The best bout of the year has been split into two categories, as it has been for a while.
The world title bouts up for the award are:
Kazuto Ioka Vs Kosei Tanaka (15-1, 9) [田中恒成]
Naoya Inoue Vs Jason Moloney
Junto Nakatani Vs Giemel Magramo
As for the none world title bouts, the fights nominated here are:
Riku Nagahama [長濱 陸] Vs Kudura Kaneko [クドゥラ 金子]- For the OPBF Welterweight title
Kenichi Ogawa [尾川 堅一] Vs Kazuhiro Nishitani [西谷和宏] - Non title bout
Masayoshi Nakatani Vs Felix Verdejo - WBO Intercontinental Lightweight title
Ryoji Fukunaga Vs Kenta Nakagawa [中川 健太] - WBO Asia Pacific, JBC and OPBF triple title bout
and Hironori Mishiro Vs Masayuki Ito [伊藤 雅雪] - Non title bout
As for the female awards, the MVP nominess are:
WBO Atomweight champion Mika Iwakawa (10-5-1, 3) [岩川 美花]
WBO female Minimumweight champion Etsuko Tada (20-3-3, 7) [多田悦子]
and WBO female Super Flyweight champion Tomoko Okuda (7-2-2, 1) [奥田朋子]
The best bouts for female boxing are:
Mika Iwakawa Vs Nanae Suzuki [鈴木菜々江]
Etsuko Tada Vs Ayaka Miyao [宮尾 綾香]
and Tomoko Okuda Vs Miyo Yoshida [吉田 実代]
Tomorrow at the EDION Arena Osaka we'll see WBO female Super Flyweight champion Miyo Yoshida (14-1) [吉田 実代] defending her title for the second time, as she goes up against Tomoko Okuda (6-2-2, 1) [奥田朋子].
Today, ahead of their clash, the two fighters took part in their weigh in for the bout, and both fighters made weight.
On the scales Yoshida, who was the much shorter fighters, came in comfortably under the limit, weighing around 114.6lbs for the bout. She spoke about being the shorter fighter and suggested it wasn't going to be an issue and that she had sparred men to prepare for Okuda. She also seemed to feel that she has developed as a fighter following her transfer to the Misako Gym earlier this year and working with a new trainer.
Okuda on the other hand was bang on the limit and looked huge at the weight, though that shouldn't be too much of a surprise given that she has, mostly, been competing at Bantamweight. Interestingly she revealed that she was able to eat well and still make weight, thanks to advice from fellow fighter Shingo Kawamura. She also admitted that she didn't expect this title fight to come so soon, but is grateful for the opportunity.
For fans wanting to watch this it will be made available, on demand, on subscription service Boxing Raise.
Related - Yoshida takes on Okuda in second WBO world title defense
(Image courtesy of Misako Gym)
Earlier today Boxing Raise released their line up for December and have announced that they will be including 4 shows during the month, with one live. Despite the fact there's only a single live show the 4 show line up is a brilliant one, with two female world title fights, two Japanese title bouts and a triple title unification contest.
The first of those shows will be the December 3rd Dangan promoted card. This will be headlined by a Japanese Minimumweight title bout featuring Masataka Taniguchi (12-3, 7) [谷口将隆] and Hizuki Saso (12-6-2, 4) [佐宗 緋月], who battle for the vacant title. The same show will also feature a WBO female Minimumweight title bout between Ayaka Miyao (23-8-2, 6) [宮尾 綾香] and Etsuko Tada (19-3-3, 6) [多田悦子].
The second show will be on December 13th and will be headlined by WBO female Super Flyweight champion Miyo Yoshida (14-1) [吉田 実代] defending her title against Tomoko Okuda (6-2-2, 1) [奥田朋子].
The only live show for the month will be on December 14th, and it's a genuinely great show from Kadoebi. The main event here will see Japanese Super Flyweight champion Kenta Nakagawa (19-3-1, 12) [中川 健太] battle WBO Asia Pacific champion Ryoji Fukunaga (12-4, 12) [福永亮次] with the two men unifying their belts, and also fighting for the vacant OPBF title in a triple title unification bout. Other bouts on this card include a brilliant match up between Hiroki Okada (19-2, 13) [岡田 博喜] and Izuki Tomioka (7-3-1, 2) [富岡樹], as well as a bout between Masahiro Suzuki (4-0, 2) [鈴木雅弘] and Jumbo Oda Nobunaga Shoten Petagine (10-5, 8) [ジャンボおだ信長本屋ペタジーニ] and one between Matcha Nakagawa (13-2-1, 5) [中川 抹茶] and Ryo Suwa (11-3, 2) [諏訪 亮].
The final show takes place on December 26th in and will be headlined by Japanese Light Flyweight champion Masamichi Yabuki (11-3, 11) [佐藤政道] defending his title against Toshimasa Ouchi (22-9-3, 8) [大内 淳雅], in what will be Yabuki's first defense.
For subscribers to Boxing Raise we'll admit December might not have a lot of shows, but what it has are fantastic, and each of these 4 shows is worth watching. We have a good month ahead for Boxing Raise users!
(Image courtesy of boxingraise.com)
As we head towards the end of 2020 we are expecting a lot of announcements for bouts, and shows that haven't yet been publicly confirmed. For example we've known for a while that on December 13th there would be a world title fight in Japan, but until there was near clear indication as to who would be involved on the show.
Earlier today that changed with the announced of who would be on that show.
The announced was that WBO female Super Flyweight champion Miyo Yoshida (14-1) [吉田 実代] would be making her second defense of the title with the champion taking on Tomoko Okuda (6-2-2, 1) [奥田朋子], who won the OPBF and Japanese female Bantamweight titles last year.
The bout will take place at EDION Arena Osaka, in Osaka City, and will be taking place on the second show at the venue on December 13th, following on from a Shinsei promoted events under their "Real Spirits" banner.
For Yoshida, who has gained a lot of attention for being a single mother who has gone on to win a world title, this will be her first bout since transferring to the Misako gym earlier this year. She's expected to show a lot of improvement in this bout, and has admitted to working on the on the inside.
As for Okuda this is her first world title bout and she has thanked those responsible for setting this bout up. She's clearly excited about the opportunity, but she will clear be the under-dog against the talented, tall, and awkward champion, who really has impressed in recent bouts.
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