Earlier today the East Japan Boxing Association announced their award winners for the month of August. This month we have winners for all 3 awards, the MVP, Fighting Spirit and Newcomer.
The MVP for the month is Japanese Featherweight champion Ryo Sagawa (10-1, 5) [佐川遼], who stopped the gutsy and brave Yuri Takemoto (8-2-1, 4) [竹本雄利] on august 13th to retain his title. The bout, Sagawa's second defense, saw the two fighters put on a real show for the fans, before Sagawa's accuracy and hard body shots took the wind out of Takemoto's sails, and finished him off right at the end of round 6.
The Fight Spirit award was won by the world ranked Ryota Yamauchi (7-1, 6) [山内涼太]. The talented and exciting Yamauchi won the award as he beat down Satoru Todaka (10-4-4, 3) [戸髙達] to claim the WBO Asia Pacific Flyweight title. The power and aggression saw Todaka take a pounding in round 3 before he was stopped in the corner between rounds. With the win Yamauchi is expected to take a huge step towards a potential world title fight in the next year or so.
The Newcomer award was won by sensationally talented former amateur stand out Ryutaro Nakagaki (1-0, 1) [中垣 龍汰朗], who stopped Shohei Horii (3-6-2, 2) [堀井翔平] in 2 rounds back on August 24th. That win was a sign that Nakagaki has transitioned from the amateurs to the professionals perfectly, and he looks like a real star of the future.
Earlier today at Korakuen Hall Kadoebi put on their latest show in their "Slugfest" series. Although not a massive card it was certainly a notable one with a regional title fight and several good looking domestic bouts all on the event.
The opening bout on the show saw 23 year old Tomoya Yamamoto (5-2, 1) [山本 智哉] take a majority decision win over Shunsuke Isa (8-3-1, 1) [伊佐 春輔]. The bout started started at a great pace, but as it went on Yamamoto slowed his output on got on his bike, boxing well at range against an exhausted Isa, who gave everything in round 5. Knowing his man was tired Yamamoto put his foot back on the gas in round 6 to squeak the win the cards. This one was scored 58-56, 58-57 and 57-57 to give Yamamoto the win.
In the second bout we saw another youngster pick up a win as the 22 year old Kaito Okubo (5-1, 2) [大久保 海都] scored a stoppage win over Ryo Tanimoto (5-4, 3) [谷本 涼]. Okubo pressed the action early on, and made the taller Tanimoto uncomfortable, despite some nice shots coming from the rangy southpaw. From round 3 Okubo's pressure began to tell and he started to grind down Tanimoto, who was forced to hold his feet. Up close Okubo won the back and forth exchanges before dropping Tanimoto and forcing the referee to stop the bout. Not a bad performance at all by Okubo on his Korakuen Hall debut.
In one of the main supporting bouts Japanese-Brazilian Cristiano Aoqui (15-8-2, 10) [アオキ クリスチャーノ] scored a stoppage win against Fumisuke Kimura (9-6-1, 6) [木村 文祐], in a bout between two JBC rankled Light Welterweights. The typically fun to watch Aoqui pressed forward early on and was getting inside with ease in round 2, something that didn't bode well for Kimura. As the bout went on Aoqui continued to increase the pressure and backed Kimura on to the ropes, with Kimura having no real answer. A clash of heads gave Kimura something of a respite, with Aoqui being cut around the eye, but it wasn't enough to stave him off. In round 5 a spiteful body shot took the legs away from Kimura and a follow right forced the stoppage.
The second of the major bouts was a Lightweight affair as Masanori Rikiishi (8-1, 4) [力石 政法] took a clear, and surprisingly comfortable, decision over Yuichiro Kasuya (13-3-2, 4) [粕谷 雄一郎]. Coming in here both fighters were JBC and OPBF ranked, giving a sense that this was a really meaningful bout, with the winner taking a huge step towards a title fight. The first round was tense, with neither man landing much of note, instead they were seeing what the other could offer, jockeying for ring position. That quiet opening round seemed to instill some confident in Kasuya, who pressed forward in round 3 and made the most of his jab. Sadly for Kasuya that was about as good as it got for him as Rikiishi woke up in round 4 and started to land his straight left hand, and footwork to land clean shots. Kasuya was cut in round 5 and had his pressure used against him in round 6 as Rikiishi started to run away with the contest. After 8 rounds we went to the score cards with scores of 70-74 and 78-74, twice, all in favour of Rikiishi.
In the main event of the show world ranked Flyweight Ryota Yamauchi (7-1, 6) [山内涼太] claimed his first professional title, as he defeated Satoru Todaka (10-4-4, 3) [戸髙達]. The bout was expected to be a bit of a mismatch and it turned out that way, with Yamauchi picking apart Todaka from fairly early on. Todaka tried to fight back but had no answered for Yamauchi who showed patience, skill, power and great shot selection. Todaka quickly had the fight beaten out of him and he seemed to be the verge of being stopped when the bell rang to end round 3. Well down, with his left eye damaged and looking like he had no chance Todaka's team took the decision to stop the bout between rounds 3 and 4. With the win Yamauchi takes a huge step forward with his career and opens up the possibility of a WBO world title fight. As for Todaka, this is almost certainly the end for him, with the fighter himself suggesting yesterday that this would be his last bout win or lose.
Tomorrow at Korakuen Hall world ranked Flyweight Ryota Yamauchi (6-1, 5) [山内涼太] will be seeking his first professional title, as he takes on Satoru Todaka (10-3-4, 3) [戸髙達] in a bout for the WBO Asia Pacific Flyweight title.
Today, ahead of their bout, 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 112lb Flyweight limit and looked in great physical condition. He not only looked great physically but was also the naturally bigger guy and seemed incredibly confident. The 25 year old spoke about his loss to Wulan Tuolehazi last year, in a WBA International title, and seemed confident of making the most of his second chance at a title. He spoke about wanting to prove he's a capable fighter and winning a title, some he apparently failed to do as an amateur, despite his clear and obvious talent.
Todaka was well under the limit, coming in at 111.5lbs, though that was no surprise given he's generally been a Light Flyweight through his career. Rather notably, before the fight, he spoke about this probably being his final bout. Despite that it appears he's up for this and set to end his career with a bang, win or lose.
Despite not being the most well established title out there it has served as a gate way belt for fighters like Nonito Donaire, Tepparith Kokietgym and Sho Kimura, and if Yamauchi wins, as many expect he's going to move in line for a WBO world title fight in the near future. With that in mind this is a major bout for him.
Related - Yamauchi goes for gold as he takes on Todaka
(Image credit - Kadoebi)
Last month we reported that world ranked Flyweight Ryota Yamauchi (6-1, 5) [山内涼太] would be back in action on August 19th at the next Kadoebi show, though at the time it was unclear who he would be facing. The only thing we knew about Yamauchi's bout was that it would be a step towards a world title bout.
Today it was revealed that Yamauchi would be facing off with fellow Japanese fighter Satoru Todaka (10-3-4, 4) [戸髙達], in what will be a bout for the WBO Asia Pacific Flyweight title, which has been vacated by Yusuke Sakashita (19-8-3, 14) [阪下優友].
For Yamuchi this will be his third bout since losing a very competitive bout with Wulan Tuolehazi in China last year. Since then he has taken a close decision over Alphoe Dagayloan and stopped MJ Bo to get his career back on track and a win here would take him to within touching distance of a world title fight.
As for Todaka he was beaten last year in a Japanese Light Flyweight title bout by Kenichi Horikawa. Since then he has scored a win over Takuya Kihashi and got his career back on track, but this is a huge step up from that bout.
Interestingly the winner of this could, potentially, be in the running to face Junto Nakatani (20-0, 15) [中谷 潤人] or Giemel Magramo (24-1, 20), following their WBO Flyweight world title bout set for August 21st. We don't see either man being suitable to challenge for a title later this year, but a win for Yamauchi could well open the door to that potential world title shot in the future.
The last few months have, for obvious reasons, not seen much boxing taking place anywhere. Thankfully in the last few weeks we have seen the sport begin to dip it's toes into the world of "the new normal", with more events planned, and more being announced almost daily.
Today Kadoebi confirmed some details of a future they will be holding in August.
The Kadoebi Boxing Gym have confirmed that the show will take place on August 19th and one of the bouts on the card will see Masanori Rikiishi (7-1, 4) [佐藤政法] take on Yuichiro Kasuya (13-2-2, 4) [粕谷雄一郎], in what is a a major Japanese bout at Lightweight and will push the winner to the verge of a national title fight.
One of the chief under-card bouts will see popular Japanese-Brazilian Cristiano Aoqui (14-9-2, 10) [アオキ クリスチャーノ] taking on Fumisuke Kimura (9-5-1, 6) [木村文祐] in an 8 rounder at 140lbs. This is a match up between two Japanese ranked fighters and the winner will move towards a title fight of some kind.
Another under-card bout will see Ryo Tanimoto (5-3, 3) [谷本涼] battle Kaito Okubo (4-1, 1) [大久保海都] in a 6 round Featherweight bout.
Arguably the most interesting bit of news is that the show will be headlined by world ranked Flyweight Ryota Yamauchi (6-1, 5) [山内涼太]. His opponent hasn't been confirmed for the show, yet, but it's assumed it will be a high level opponent with Yamauchi expected to be moved into a world title fight sooner, rather than later.
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