We have all been waiting for live boxing to return for weeks, though we all understand why the sport hasn't been taking place on any sort of regular basis. Now it appears that there are events being lined up for the next few months.
It appears that one of those events will be streamed live on the A-Sign boxing YouTube Channel, who had been hoping to stream events back in March but will now need to wait until August to have their live feeds.
Originally the channel, which has provided so amazing fights on delay, was hoping to stream some Rookie of the Year cards as part of the "Save Japanese Boxing" campaign. It's now unclear if they will be able to stream them when they get re-arranged. However the channel are planning to show an event on August 31st from the Shinjuku FACE, which isn't expected to have fans attending.
With no fans attending there is a plan to bring in a tipping system for fans to financially aid the fighters for their bouts.
The event is set to be headlined by the Japanese debut of Shoki Sakai (23-11-2, 12) [坂井 祥記], who has fought his entire career so far in the West. His opponent hasn't yet been named.
Other bouts announced for this show includes a match up between Ken Koubuchi (5-4, 4) [鯉渕 健] and cult hero Takuya Yamaguchi (4-11-2, 2) [山口拓也], as well as a bout between Ryugo Ushijima (3-1-2, 2) [牛島 龍吾] and Ryukyu Oho (6-3, 3) [大保 龍球]. Whilst not amazing bout
Others announced for this show include promising teenager Jin Sasaki (7-0, 6) [佐々木 尽] and 2019 Rookie of the Year winner Hyoga Taniguchi (3-2-2, 1) [谷口 彪賀], who are both currently without an announced opponent.
We've known for a while that there was plans to put on a card at Korakuen Hall on June 11th, though the full line up hasn't yet been announced. What we are hearing though are that their may be two former world title challengers in action on the card, as well as a fighter who is part of a very famous Japanese boxing family.
Sources in Japan and Korea have both stated that Ryohei Takahashi (15-4-1, 6) [高橋竜平], best known for losing in an IBF Super Bantamweight title fight to TJ Doheny earlier this year, will be on the show. The tough Takahashi is set to take on Korean Jin Wook Lim (10-6-5, 3) [임진욱], in what is a bit of a must win for both fighters.
Takahashi's shot at Doheny was an unexpected one, and despite losing he did show great fighting spirit and gave a solid effort against a man several levels better than himself. That loss to Doehny, an 11th round TKO, saw the end of a 5 fight winning run from Takahashi. Lim on the other hand was stopped last time out by Jess Rhey Waminal, who stopped him in 9 rounds in a bout for the "interim" WBA Asia Bantamweight title. That was his second stoppage loss, following a 2016 defeat to the then OPBF Super Bantamweight champion Shun Kubo.
The other former world title challenger pencilled in for the show is said to be Thailand's Samartlek Kokietgym (34-9-1, 12), who has previous fought Akira Yaegashi and Naoya Inoue for world titles. Samartlek is pencilled in to face Naoki Mochizuki (15-4, 8) [望月直樹].
For Mochizuki the bout will be his first since losing to Junto Nakatani in a Japanese Flyweight title bout, back in February, Samartlek on the other hand has gone 1-3-1 in his last 5, and is a long way removed from the fighter who went 11 rounds with Inoue back in 2014.
It should be noted that only 1 site has reported the Samartlek bout at the moment, and no site has reported both bouts, so it seems like there is still some confusion on the full line up. We do have have confirmation that 20 year old Kyonosuke Kameda (3-1, 2) [亀田京之介], the cousin to the 3 fighting world champions who share his surname, will be on the show. He will be up against Ryugo Ushijima (3-0, 2) [牛島龍吾], who impressed us earlier this year with his win against Shota Ogasawara. This is a tough bout for Kameda.
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