Yesterday fight fans across Japan saw Koki Kameda (33-2, 18) [亀田 興毅] and Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (91-5-2, 47) [พงษ์ศักดิ์เล็ก วันจงคำ] take part in an exhibition, which ended in round 2 when Koki stopped the Thai veteran. The bout was supposed to be Kameda's final contest though afterwards Kameda stated he would like to fight again, against 4-weight world champion Roman Gonzalez (46-2, 38) in a bout potentially at Super Flyweight.
The bout looked like a pretty interesting one on paper, and given the popularity of both men it would certainly draw in a lot of interest from fans, all over the glove, with many wanting to see Kameda fight a live opponent, a lot wanting to see Kameda get beaten and a lot wanting to see Gonzalez fight against someone who isn't going to potentially finish his career with some brutal knockout, like a third bout against Srisaket Sor Rungvisai could do.
The bout seemed like a good idea from Kameda and something that fans, sponsors and the such would like. Sadly however it has already been shot down, with Teiken representative Tsuyoshi Hamada stating there is no point in the bout and that Gonzalez was looking to reclaim a world title.
It's clear that Teiken would rather have Gonzalez in a big bout, though with the Super Flyweight title picture looking a bit tied up for now we can't help but feel Hamada's comments lack real merit. We understand Teiken not wanting to deal with Kameda, but there is point in the match up, with a bout potentially giving Gonzalez a good pay day in Japan for what would be seen as a relatively safe bout coming back from a string of wars with Carlos Cuadras and Srisaket, as well as back to back losses. Teiken and Gonzalez have got to fancy their man being too good for Kameda and given the potential financial pay off it seems silly for Teiken to rule out the bout so quickly.
It's unclear what either mans immediate plans are but we wouldn't be surprised to see Kameda back in the ring before the end of 2018, whilst Gonzalez is thought to be attempting one final charge at world level before the end of the year.
Earlier today fight fans in Japan were able to tune into Abema TV and see the rematch between Koki Kameda (33-2, 18) [亀田 興毅] and Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (91-5-2, 47) [พงษ์ศักดิ์เล็ก วันจงคำ], who fought in a 6 round exhibition at Bantamweight.
The bout, which was advertised as being Koki Kameda's final bout, was fought in front of a packed Korakuen Hall and started quite comptitively. Wonjongkam, who looked old but still had glimpses of his ring craft, started fast and had some early success. It wasn't long however until Kameda's youth and speed began to shine and through the first round Kameda looked like he was getting more and more comfortable.
In round 2 the speed of Kameda told again as he landed a hard right hand and a solid straight left to send Wonjongkam down hard. The Thai tried to get to his feet but stumbled and the referee stopped the bout almost immediately before Kameda celebrated.
The two men would embrace, and there was a lot of respect between the two men after the bout.
Also after the bout Kameda told the crowd that this may not be his final bout after all, and that he would like to return for one more, a proper fully sanctioned bout.
Kameda not only stated he wanted to fight again, but that he would like to face off with 4-weight world champion Roman Gonzalez (46-2, 38). He offered to go down to Super Flyweight to face the Nicaraguan in what would be a really interesting fight, given that Gonzalez doesn't look like the fighter he once was, and despite Kameda beign older he is naturally bigger and has avoided the big wars Gonzalez has had in recent bouts.
As for Wonjongkam, his post fight comments suggested that even in his peak he would have struggled to have taken the shots that finished him off today, and compliments Kameda's speed and crispness.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
This coming wekend fight fans with subscriptions to Abema TV will get the chance to see the rematch between Koki Kameda (33-2, 18) [亀田 興毅] and Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (91-5-2, 47) [พงษ์ศักดิ์เล็ก วันจงคำ].
Today, ahead of their bout, Kameda took part in a public work out and spoke about his return to the ring.
Kameda seemed to suggest that he was looking to begin a new era in boxing and help raise the amount fighters in Japan can earn, even comparing himself to Sakamoto Ryoma, a famous and influential Japanese Samurai and political figure from the 1800's. It seems like Koki's ego, which has always been pretty large, is just as big as ever.
He spoke of wanting to face Wonjongkam, and it seems like the desire to face the former 2-time Flyweight champion has been something he's been wanting to do for a long time. The loss to Wonjongkam is one of only two on his record, and he seems to obvious have a burning desire to avenge the defeat.
As for the actual training session Kameda spent 2 round hitting the mitts with his training, looking sharp in great condition, before doing 4 rounds on the heavy bag. He looked in great shape, and despite being sharp looked very relaxed and calm, and it's clear that whilst he has taken this bout seriously he feels he will be the clear winner.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
This coming weekend fight fans in Japan will be able to see Koki Kameda (33-2, 18) [亀田 興毅] face off with Thai legend Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (91-5-2, 47) [พงษ์ศักดิ์เล็ก วันจงคำ] in a special 8 round exhibition style bout at the Korakuen Hall.
Despite the bout not being an official on, and not counting on either man's record, it is being taken very seriously by the two men, and today Wonjoingkam took part in a public work out for the media.
At today's event he spoke confidentally, stating he would win and seemed very relaxed and calm.
It's been revealed that to prepare for this bout with Kameda the Thai has been sparring with Petch Sor Chitpattana (46-0, 31) [เพชร ซีพีเฟรชมาร์ท] and Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep (50-3, 35) [ยอดมงคล ซีพีเฟรชมาร์ท] and has sparred 50 rounds with the two men. Although he admits he's not the fighter he once was, he claims to be 70-80% of what he was in his pomp.
At today's training session Wonjongkam didn't work too hard, but seemed very relaxed and hasn't gone over to Tokyo to just pick up a pay cheque. Instead he's got into really good condition and is just 1KG over the limit at the moment. Not only that but his team seemed to feel like he has got better movement than expected and they seemed like they wre expecting a victory this coming Saturday.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Over the last few weeks there has been a lot of news in Japan about the rematch between Koki Kameda (33-2, 18) [亀田 興毅] and Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (91-5-2, 47) [พงษ์ศักดิ์เล็ก วันจงคำ]. The bout was announced as Kameda's final bout, back on March 31st, with the two agreeing to fight in a Bantamweight bout on May 5th. The bout was then essentially scuppered by the rules of JBC who wouldn't allow the bout due to the age and inactivity of Wonjongkam.
With the rules set to deny him of a license Pongsaklek made a ring return on April 8th, winning a Thai national title with a win over the very limited Yodpichai Sithsaithong. That performance allowed Wonjongkam to claim he hadn't been out of the ring for 3 years, which was technically true. That fight allowed the promoters to apply for a license for Wonjongkam to fight in Japan, which they did on March 20th for the JBC to review.
The JBC have now reviewed the application, made by Kyoei, and have refused to license the bout for May 5th.
Although they won't license it as a professional bout the JBC will allow the contest to go ahead, with some modified rules.
The bout will not have ringside judges, as we typically expect of a bout, but will instead have it's winner decided by a fan vote, if it goes the scheduled 8 round distance. Sources report that it will be regarded as a "JBC approved informal match", essentially avoiding the "exhibition tag" but not being counted on the record of either fighter.
This will be terrible news for Kameda, who clearly wanted to avenge one of his two professional defeats, but will allow the bout to go ahead in some form. It will almso, perhaps in a positive way, allow some of the focus to be put in the direction of Tomoki Kameda (34-2, 20) [亀田和毅], ahead of his bout with Mexican fighter Daniel Noriega (30-11-1, 15). Tomoki has stated this will be his final bout before getting a world title bout, so hopefully he'll get some attention and it'll give him a boost before his next shot at a world title.
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