Earlier tpoday Ohashi Gym announced their next Phoenix Battle show, Phoenix Battle 78, which will take place on July 8th at Korakuen Hall and it's a brilliant card with two Japanese Youth title bouts, as well as several other notable fighters on the lower end of the show.
The main event of the card will be a Japanese Youth Super Flyweight bout pitting two of the hottest young talented in Japan against each other, with former amateur standout Ryutaro Nakagaki (2-0, 2) [中垣龍汰朗] taking on explosive teenager Ayumu Hanada (6-0, 4) [花田 歩夢] for the vacant title, in what should be a genuinely spectacular contest.
For those who haven't seen these two Nakagaki is a brilliant pure boxer, who had issues with power in the amateurs but appears to have adapted to the professional ranks really well and is looking like a solid puncher, and a very special boxer. He was a stellar amateur and appears to be set for the hyper fast track to the top, and with his ability few can blame him for wanting to win titles as early as possible. Hanada on the other hand began his career in Mexico, where he looked exciting and talented, but incredibly young. He returned to Japan in 2019 and made his JBC debut in 2020, with an excellent performance against Ryukyu Nagamine. Hanada returned to the ring this past April, and although he wasn't punch perfect he over-came the very dangerous Mammoth Kazunori.
Whilst the men might only have 8 bouts between them this is a genuinely brilliant match up and he sort of thing that the Japanese Youth title has been giving us over the last few years.
The other Japanese Youth title bout will see Takeru Kobata (9-5-1, 4) [小畑武尊] make his first defense of the Japanese Youth Welterweight title, as he takes on Tetsuya Kondo (6-2, 4) in what should be an explosive enounter.
The under-rated Kobata won the title in March, with a big upset win against Rikuto Adachi, and will be looking to build on that win here as he returns to Korakuen Hall for just the third time in his career. A win for him would show that his victory over Adachi wasn't a fluke and was instead a sign that he's a legitimate prospect and someone to keep an eye on, despite his 5 losses. Kondo on the other hand will be getting his first title bout and continues to rebuil his career following an opening round TKO loss in 2019 to the destructive Jin Sasaki. That loss aside Kondo hasn't been stopped before but is expected to be giving natural size to Kobata.
Lower down the show we'll see hard hitting Japanese ranked Featherweight Tsuyoshi Tameda (21-6-2, 19) [溜田剛士].battle against Soreike Taichi (7-4, 5) [木村太一], as both men desperately look to bounce back from recent back to back stoppage defeats. We'll also see Japanese ranked Minimumweights collide as Katsuki Mori (8-0, 1) [森且貴] clashes with Ren Kojima (6-1-2) [小島 蓮], in a battle between two men who have won the All Japan Rookie of the Year, with Mori winning in 2019 and Kojima winning in the latest edition of the tournament.
Although not a monster card, set to get massive international attention this is an incredibly good domestic card, with a number of really good bouts and a chance for the young talent in Japan to shine. The main event is a genuinely amazing bout, the co-feature should be exciting, Tameda and Taichi should be explosive and it's always a job to see Mori and Kojima in action. This is a fantastic line up from Ohashi and we really hope nothing forces any changes to what looks set to be a strong domestic card.
Earlier today it was announced that the scheduled May 13th show by Ohashi Gym was set to be postponed by 8 days, pushing it from May 13th to May 21st, due to the on going State of Emergency in Tokyo.
The exact announcement stated "We have decided to change the date and time in consideration of the extension in the recent situation." It was also confirmed that tickets will not be available for purchase on the day of the event due.
Despite the delay the show is a really interesting one. It will be headlined by a regional Featherweight unification bout between WBO Asia Pacific champion Musashi Mori (12-0, 7) [森 武蔵] and OPBF champion Satoshi Shimizu (9-1, 9) [清水 聡]. As well as the main event we also get an excellent chief support bout was Kazuki Nakajima (9-0-1, 8) [中嶋一輝] battles Kai Chiba (13-1, 8) [千葉開] for the vacant OPBF Bantamweight title.
Whilst fans will be wanting to watch, sadly the show won't be available to watch live. It will, however, be expected to be shown on tape delay by Fuji TV, who have a distribution deal with Ohashi and show tape delay broadcasts of many of their shows.
On Friday the official blog of Hideyuki Ohashi announced that 21 year old amateur stand out Kaiyu Toyoshima [豊嶋海優] had decided to turn professional and would do so at the Ohashi Gym, following a very impressive run as an amateur.
Although not one of the biggest names in amateur boxing in Japan Toyoshima competed in numerous notable tournaments, he was the captain of the Toyo University team and even featured on some of the posters used to market some of the university league shows.
At the moment it's unclear when he will begin his professional journey, with the date of his debut yet to be decided, though it's expected that he will begin climbing up the professional ranks before the end of 2021.
Interestingly the amateur boxing record site on Strefa sadly only has 1 recorded bout for him, and incidentally that's a loss against Ryutaro Nakagaki (1-0, 1) [中垣龍汰朗] in the 2018 Japanese National Championships. Going forward the two men will now be Ohashi Gym stablemates and it'll be interesting to see if that bout plays as something of a factor in the two youngsters trying to out do each now they are both professional fighters.
Notably that fight between Toyoshima and Nakagaki can be seen below thanks to the brilliant sakana 1976, who uploaded the bout after it took place in 2018, and who should be subscribed to by every fan who wants to get an insight in the Japanese amateur scene. For those wanting to watch Toyoshima is in red and Nakagaki is in blue.
Earlier today the very well regarded Ohashi Gym announced that former K-1 sensation Yoshiki Takei [武居由樹] had signed with them as he begins his professional boxing career, with the plan to debut in Spring 2021 after partaking in his pro-test in January.
The 24 year old really was a sensational kick boxer, winning both the K-1 WORLD GP super Bantamweight championship and the Krush Bantamweight title during his short but success career in kick boxing. As a professional kick boxer he fought just 25 times, though amassed a very impressive 23-2 (16) record and won 22 bouts in a row following a 1-2 start to his professional career.
Although we're not huge followers of kick boxing some of Takei's opponents are people even we recognise, such as Tenshin Nasukawa, with the two men fighting to a draw in the amateurs in 2012, and former boxer Kenji Kubo, who Takei knocked out in 2018 with a right hook. That's right, he knocked out a former professional boxer, with a punch!
From footage of Takei his boxing skills do look solid for a kick boxer, and his hands were clearly something he worked on, with very crisp punches, good understanding of punching range and timing on his punches. Obviously he was also fantastic with his kicks, but we suspect his transition to professional boxing will be a smooth one given how good his hands are.
The talented southpaw will be trained by former 3-weight world champion Akira Yaegashi and will be competing at either Bantamweight or Super Bantamweight. The hope is for him to become a world champion in professional boxing, adding to his combat sport accolades.
For those who have never seen him we have included a 2019 K-1 bout of his below, as he took on Spain's Alex Rivas.
(Image credit - Ohashi Gym)
Earlier today Hideyuki Ohashi took to social media to announce the full line up for the next "Phoenix Battle" card, which will take place on November 28th at Korakuen Hall.
The main event of the card will see WBO Asia Pacific Featherweight champion Musashi Mori (11-0, 6) [森 武蔵] defending his regional title against hard hitting challenger Tsuyoshi Tameda (21-5-2, 19) [溜田剛士]. This will be Mori's third defense of the title, that he won in 2018 and will be his first contest since December 2018, when he beat Takuya Mizuno. The talented youngster is tipped for big things, and had been expected to end the year on the verge of a world title fight, but 2020 hasn't exactly gone to plan. As for Tameda the bout will see him looking to bounce back from a TKO loss to Jae Woo Lee, with that defeat occurring at the Hajime No Ippo 30th Anniversary tournament last November.
The main event will see Mori enter as a clear favourite, though Tameda certainly has the power to make life difficult for the champion.
The chief support bout will be the previously reported 8 round clash between former 2-time world title challenger Masayuki Kuroda (30-8-3, 16) [黒田雅之] and unbeaten prospect Ayato Hiromoto (2-0, 1) [廣本彩刀]. This will be Kuroda's first bout in well over a year, following his defeat to Moruti Mthalane, whilst Hiromoto will be taking a massive step up in class, in what should amount to a genuine test of the talented youngster. It's worth noting that Kuroda has recently changed full time jobs and will be entertaing this bout with a new found hunger, but will also be moving up in weight for the contest. As for Hiromoto he has the natural size advantage, but obviously doesn't have anything like the experience of Kuroda.
Notable Kuroda Vs Hiromoto was originally announced for November 12th but has been pushed back by just over 2 weeks for this new date.
In an 8 round Welterweight bout Rikuto Adachi (14-2, 11) [安達陸仁] will clash with Hisashi Kato (9-9-2, 5) [加藤寿]. This will be Adachi's first bout since transferring to the Ohashi Gym in the summer and will see him looking to build on back to back wins over Change Hamashima and Masafumi Ando. The 35 year old Kato doesn't have the greatest of record but isn't a push over and his last 3 losses have all come to very solid domestic level fighters. He actually took a 3 and a half year break from the ring after his last loss, in December 2015, and has scored two wins since returning to the ring in May 2019.
One final 8 rounder announced for the card will see Seiryu Toshikawa (12-5, 7) [利川聖隆] take on Takahiko Kobayashi (9-3, 7) [小林孝彦], in a bout at 140lbs. On paper this is the least interesting bout on the show, but does promise fireworks and should be a really interesting domestic bout, with both men hungry to make an impression.
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