Earlier today at Korakuen Hall fight fans had the latest Kadoebi promoted "Slugfest" card.
The under-card was, on paper, one of the most interest under-card we've seen in Japan this year with two very notable bouts on it.
One of those bouts saw the world ranked Japanese Flyweight Ryota Yamauchi (6-1, 5) [山内涼太] bounce back from the disappointment of missing out on a Japanese title eliminator last year, when he was injured. The talented Yamauchi was up against Filipino visitor MJ Bo (8-4-2, 4) and managed to stop the Filipino in 2 rounds.
Yamauchi looked really good for most of the first round, but was tagged by a hard right late in the round as Bo showed some life, and showed that was dangerous. The two each unloaded heavier shots in the second round, but a right up top and a left to the body dropped Bo for the 10 count, at an official time of 1:27 in round 2. Big things are expected from Yamauchi, but it was clear, again, that he had defensive flaws that needed to be sorted before he steps up again, and he is still susceptible to straight right hands, something we saw him getting caught by numerous times by Wulan Tuolehazi last year.
On paper an even better match up saw youngsters Yuki Nakajima (4-1, 4) [中嶋憂輝] and Shisui Kawabata (2-2, 2) [川畑嗣穂] clash in a mouth watering match up.
From the off this was high skilled stuff, with both both looking to measure the opponents for straight shots in the first couple of rounds. It was clear both men believed they had the power to hurt the other. Nakajima changed the bout up in round 3, when he began to press more, and this is where he really began to build some momentum, attacking the body up close and roughing up Kawabata, with the 4th round being a particularly exciting one. The rough house tactics from Nakajima saw him hitting Kawabata with an illegal shot in round 5, and the referee gave Kawabata time to recover. Despite Kawabata still having moments during rounds 4 and 5, this wasn't the type of fight he was wanting and he was being ground down by the heavy hands and physicality of Nakajima.
In round 6 a Nakajima uppercut dropped Kawabata, who went down hard. The referee started a count, but waved the bout off part way through.
(Photo by A.McGovern)
Tomorrow in Tokyo fight fans will get the chance to see world ranked Japanese Flyweight Ryota Yamauchi (5-1, 4) [山内涼太] kick off his 2020 as he takes on Filipino MJ Bo (8-3-2, 4) as part of "Slugfest 13".
Today the two men took part in their weigh in and both men made the Flyweight limit with no issues.
On the scales Yamauchi was bang on the Flyweight limit, whilst Bo was easily under the limit, coming in at around 110.5lbs.
For Yamauchi this bout will be his first since last he beat Alphoe Dagayloan back in August, when he took a majority decision over Dagayloan. That win came at a cost, and meant that Yamauchi had to miss out on a Japanese title eliminator which was set for October. It seems that that was on his mind today and he seemed to suggest that he would be fighting with the regret of missing that opportunity. Rather ominous signs for Bo, who was stopped in his only previous bout in Japan.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today online subscription service Boxing Raise revealed their schedule for February and sadly it's rather lacking with only 3 shows in total, and only 1 live one. That is however a sign of a quiet February in Japan more than anything, with only 7 shows scheduled for the entire month, including the February 1st card which was shown on G+.
The first of the Boxing Raise cards is actually available already and took place today at Korakuen Hall. The card was a rather small and low key one, featuring only 4 round bouts. Whilst the show didn't get much attention it is good to see the service uploading the bouts on the same day which hasn't always been the case.
The next show to be including on the service this month is the February 14th Kadoebi card. This will be headlined by Froilan Saludar (31-3-1, 22) defending the WBO Asia Pacific Super Flyweight title against Ryoji Fukunaga (11-4, 11) [福永亮次] in what looks likely to be an explosive match up. Other bouts of note on this card will include Ryota Yamauchi (5-1, 4) [山内涼太] facing off with Filipino MJ Bo (8-3-2, 4) and a brilliant match up between Yuki Nakajima (3-1, 3) [中嶋憂輝] and Shisui Kawabata (2-1, 2) [川畑嗣穂].
The only live card for the month will take place on February 27th and is an excellent looking card, headlined by an OPBF Welterweight title bout between Riku Nagahama (11-2-1, 4) [長濱 陸] and Kudura Kaneko (11-0, 8) [クドゥラ 金子] and also featuring the Hajime No Ippo 30th anniversary tournament semi finals. Those semi-finals will see Jae Woo Lee (7-2, 6) [이재우] taking on Shingo Kusano (12-8-1, 5) [草野慎悟] and Richard Pumicpic (21-10-2, 6) clashing with Daisuke Watanabe (9-4-2, 6) [渡部大介].
Whilst it's a shame there's so little content this month, it is impressive that Boxing Raise do have 3 of the 7 Japanese cards from the entire month.
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