Earlier today Japanese promoter Masaya Motoishi, from the Green Tsuda Gym, announced that he has now applied for former WBC female Flyweight champion Shindo Go (16-4, 11) [真道ゴー] to have pro-test bout, as a man. With that test now expected to come within weeks.
In Japan a fighter must pass a test bout before being granted a license, thus showing a basic level of skill, stamina and understanding of the sport. This will see Go sparring with a man and needing to impress officials. Something Go has reportedly been doing in other sparring sessions, in front of those involved in the West Japan Professional Boxing Association.
Notably if Go does pass their test, and makes a professional debut Go won't be the first transgender fighter to have fought as both a female and a male in the professional ranks, following in the footsteps of American fighter David Morrison and somewhat similarly to Patricio Manuel, who fought as a female in the amateurs before under-going realignment and making his debut as a man in 2018.
Earlier this month we reported that former WBC female Flyweight champion Shindo Go (16-4, 11) [真道ゴー] was looking to begin their career as a male boxer, with the Japan Professional Boxing Association (JPBA) announcing that they would support Go if they chose to get a male boxing license.
Yesterday Go held a press conference to speak about their boxing boxing career.
At the press conference Go stated "I have left behind (my career as a female boxer). I want to go up to the ring as a male boxer."
It was also revealed go's male pro-test bout will take place on May 15th, with the JBC requiring boxers to partake in their pro-tests before their 35th birthday, and Go turns 35 in July.
Als at the press conference was Green Tsuda gym chairman Masay Motoishi, who stated “I want Go to play a match by the end of the year".
Aged 34, and heading to 35, Go's second career as a box is expected to be a short one and see Go compete at either Super Flyweight or Bantamweight.
Over the last few years athletes transitioning from male to female has been a major talking point, with the likes of Lia Thomas, Fallon Fox, Kelly Morgan, Emily Bridges and Laurel Hubbard all getting notable press coverage, and we've also seen that amplified by notable voices outside of sport, such as author J.K. Rowling.
One thing we've seen a lot less frequently are athletes transitioning from female to male. There has been cases, but they have certainly been a lot less notable, and a lot less controversial.
Today the Japan Professional Boxing Association (JPBA) held an online press conference after their regular board meeting to announce that they would be supporting LGBT fighters in the sport, and would be happy to allow former WBC female Flyweight champion Shindo Go (16-4, 11) a license, as long as Go passes a pro-test as a man.
Go, who retired from the sport as a female in 2017, under went gender realignment surgery that same year, and began living as a man, named Hiroshi Hashimoto.
The fighter had long spoke about gender identity disorder and mentioned about feeling they were born into the wrong body as a child.
Although the decision from the JPBA doesn't mean Go will get a license as a man, they have decided to petition to the JBC to allow fighters who have transitioned to get licenses.
In this particular case, Go has been training at the Green Tsuda gym, and Masato Yamashita has watched some of the training and sparring with men. Not only that, but Yamashita has apparently been impressed and seen Go holding their own against male partners.
Aside from the transgender issue, the press conference also saw the East Japan Boxing Association announce their new line up of leading officials. This has seen Celes Kobayashi sit as the chairman of the East Japan Association for the first time and being joined by, Haruki Sato of Northern Japan, Nobuo Higashi of Central Japan, Masato Yamashita of West Japan, and Nobuaki Hiranaka of Western Japan, who have been appointed as vice-chairpersons. The secretary general has been decided to be Tatsuya Saida, the current chairman of the World Sports Boxing Gym.
Earlier today the Green Tsuda gym held a notable press conference to talk about their potential female star of the future, and a former female world champion who announced their retirement.
The rising star was school girl fighter Fuka Komura (5-0, 2) [小村楓香], who was there to talk about her November 20th bout with fellow unbeaten Jun Yabuki (8-0,4) [矢吹純]. The bout, for the Japanese female Minimumweight title, will see a new champion being crowned, and will push the winner as one of the faces of female boxing in Japan.
The young Komura seemed confident at today's event, a long way from the young teenage who rose eye brows a few years ago when she debuted and seemed a bit of an emotional mess. She seems to have grown as a woman and a fighter and looked very much like a fighter looking to really announce her self to a wider audience. The bout with Yabuki isn't a career maker, but it's a major bout all the same, and will be a bout which will push her towards a potential world title fight.
As well Komura there was also an appearance from former WBC female Flyweight champion Shindo Go (16-4, 11) [真道ゴー], who now goes by the name Masaru Hashimoto. The former female fighter, who has under-gone gender realignment and is now a man, announced that they had retired from boxing, but didn't call a total end on their career, stating that he now has a dream of fighting as a man. The reality is that Go knows a win against a professional man whould be an achievement, and it seems like it's a dream that is seriously in play, but just not at the moment. He stated that they don't think they can beat a man, but he won't know without trying and want to go up against the challenge.
Although retired there is still hunger for the sport, whilst helping run a company whilst attempts to improves the lives of disabled children, and a comeback cannot be ruled out for the 30 year old.
(Image courtesy of daily.co.jp)
Last year we reported that former WBC female Flyweight champion Shindo Go (16-4, 11) [真道ゴー] was closing the door on her female boxing career to under-go sex realignment surgery to become a man. At the time the story caused a bit of a buzz, with Go suggesting she would try to fight with men after the surgery.
Following the news Go fought once, losing in a WBO female Bantamweight title fight to the brilliant Naoko Fujioka [藤岡 奈穂子], with Go having previously announced that that bout would be her last as a female.
Following the bout with Fujioka things went really quiet in regards to Go and her life. That was until earlier today when several Japanese sources reported that Go had indeed gone ahead with her gender realignment surgery, and was now living as a man. In fact not only is Go, now going under the name of Hiroshi Hashimoto, living as a man but has actually gotten married to long term partner Ayaka, after 7 years of being together.
Although Hashimoto hasn't officially announced their retirement from boxing, they are now expected to hand in a retirement notice to the JBC and begin a post boxing life whilst continuing to run a fitness gym.
Prior to having had realignment surgery Hashimoto had long battled with gender identity disorder and has openly thanked those who have respected the decision to have such drastic surgery.
We'd like to with Hashimoto and Ayaka a happy future together, and congratulate the happy couple on their marriage.
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