Earlier today at Korakuen Hall former world title challenger Ryo Matsumoto (24-3, 21) [松本亮] continued his rebuilding process as he took his third straight win and defeated domestic rival Takuya Mizuno (17-3-1, 14) [水野拓哉] in a hotly contested 8 round bout.
This bout very much had the feeling of a must win for both men who had suffered recent losses. Matsumoto suffered back to back defeats in 2018, losing to Danny Roman and Ryo Sagawa, whilst Mizuno was beaten last time out by Musashi Mori. That tension seemed to play through early on, with neither man really landing much in the first round, as neither wanted to take any risks that early.
The pace would then begin to increase and from round 5 the bout become something thrilling with both men fighting hard to win, this saw the bout become absolutely thrilling, with fantastic 2-way action. This was intensified by Matsumoto scoring a questionable knockdown, which was ruled a knockdown but Mizuno certainly didn't seem hurt.
At the end of 8 rounds we went to the scorecards with both men likely unsure if they'd done enough. At the end the knockdown proved vital, with Matsumoto winning 76-75, twice, and 77-74.
It's hard to really know what Matsumoto has in the tank. On his way up through the rankings he looked brilliant, sharp and heavy handed. That was at Super Flyweight, and he's now fighting at Featherweight where his size and power doesn't seem as good as it once did. He still looks a talent, but sadly not the talent many had expected.
As for Mizuno this is a second straight loss and it's hard to know where the 25 year old goes from here. He needs to rebuild, and he needs tough competition, but he also can't afford another defeat if he's to work his way back into a title fight in the near future.
For fans wanting to watch this it will be aired at the weekend on Fuji TV.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Tomorrow at Korakuen Hall former world title challenger Ryo Matsumoto (23-3, 21) [松本亮] will face off with domestic rival Takuya Mizuno (17-2-1, 14) [水野拓哉] in the 8 round main event of an Ohashi promoted event.
The bout, being fought at Featherweight, saw the two men weigh in on Sunday and both men made the limit with no issues at all.
On the scales Matsunoto was bang on the limit whilst Mizuno was 125.5lbs, comfortably under.
Despite both men being in their mid 20's the bout really is regarded as an incredibly important one for both men. For Matsumoto, who suffered two losses in 2018, another defeat here would be his third in 5 bouts and he'd find himself a long, long way from a second world title shot. In fact he would also likely find himself a long, long way from even a Japanese fight.
As for Mizuno he was beaten last time out in a regional title fight, and would be a long way from getting another bout of note, if he lost tomorrow.
For fans unable to get to the Korakuen Hall but wanting to watch this one, the bout will be aired on Fuji TV over the weekend on tape delay.
(Image credit - Ohashi Gym)
On August 24th the Ohashi Gym will put on their next show under the "Phoenix Battle" tag. It's not a long one, and it doesn't feature any world title fights, but does feature 3 bouts of note.
The main event of the card will see with former world title challenger Ryo Matsumoto (23-3, 21) [松本亮] battle with domestic rival Takuya Mizuno (17-2-1, 14) [水野拓哉], whilst the other notable bouts will be the 6 round debuts of Ryutaro Nakagaki (0-0) [中垣 龍汰朗] and Keisuke Matsumoto (0-0) [松本圭佑].
Former 8-crown amateur champion Nakagaki, touted as one of the most technically skilled Japanese fighters of his era, will be up against Shohei Horii (3-5-2, 2) [堀井翔平]. Matsumoto, a third generation fighter and the son of 3-time world title challenger Koji Matsumoto, will be up against the tough and rugged Hironori Miyake (9-9-2, 1) [三宅寛典].
Whilst none of that is new information what is new is the confirmation that those 3 fights will be aired on Fuji TV, albeit on tape delay.
The channel has set aside a broadcast window for the weekend following the bouts, and will attempt to show all 3 contests, though may be limited to highlights of them if all 3 go the distance.
The broadcast will be on Saturday night / Sunday Morning. The time for the event is listed as running from 27:15 to 28:20 on Saturday night local time, or to put that in a more workable format for western fans, it will be from 3:15am to 4:20am local time Sunday morning.
Whilst live televised boxing Japan has lacked since the sport has returned to the country it is worth noting this will be the 4th show on Fuji TV, and it seems like they will continue this busy activity with more shows in September, with two more expected for the month. Fingers crossed this continues with both Misako and Ohashi providing regular content to the TV giant.
A week ago we reported that a date was set for the debuts of Ryutaro Nakagaki [中垣 龍汰朗] and Keisuke Matsumoto [松本圭佑].
We not only learned that the two men would be in action on August 24th at Korakuen Hall, but that Matsumoto, dubbed the "Mirai Monster", would face Hironori Miyake (9-9-2, 1) [三宅寛典] and that Nakagaki, an 8 time amateur champion, would battle Shohei Horii (3-5-2, 2) [堀井翔平].
Today we've been informed that the main event for that show is now set, with former world title challenger Ryo Matsumoto (23-3, 21) [松本亮] facing off with Takuya Mizuno (17-2-1, 14) [水野拓哉] in an 8 round bout at Featherweight.
For Matsumoto the bout will be his third since losing in September 2018 to Ryo Sagawa, and is a big step up from his last two bouts, both of which ended in early wins for the talented Matsumoto. As for Mizuno the bout will be his first since losing in a WBO Asia Pacific title fight to Musashi Mori back in December.
Although it's only an 8 rounder this is a really interesting match up and one worth getting excited about. Although both are experienced both men are young, have bright careers ahead of them and will know that a win here gets that immediately into the regional title picture. For a main event during this current global situation this is a really solid domestic level main event. A bout we're genuinely excited about.
Heading into the weekend the hope was that WBO Asia Pacific Featherweight champion Musashi Mori (11-0, 6) [森 武蔵] would excite fans in Osaka, as he defended his belt against fellow Japanese fighter Takuya Mizuno (17-2-1, 14) [水野拓哉]. Sadly the bout failed to excite, and whilst Mori retained the title he did little to wow audiences in Japan's second biggest boxing market. It finally got going late on, but the early stages were certainly not the most exciting fans saw this weekend.
The fight featured a lot of clinching in the early going. Mori managed to get his jab going, and Mizuno tried responding with his straight, but the southpaw Vs orthodox stances of the two men did little to help a fight break out.
Thankfully round 5 did excite the fans, as the two men finally managed to have a exchange of power shots, and it seemed if a real fight was going to break out. That however was short lived as clinches began to plague the bout. Despite the clinches frustrating both men, and the audience, Mori did smartly use them as a platform to attack the body, and work on the inside, smothering the power of Mizuno and wearing him down at the same time.
In round 10 Mori landed the best shot of the fight, dropping Mizuno, and putting any questions of the scores beyond much doubt. Although was dropped he wasn't buzzed and returned to his feet quickly before the messy action resumed.
After 12 rounds the was no doubting Mori deserved the win, getting the decision with scores of 117-110, 116-111 and 115-112, but in reality few will be wanting to watch that over again, when it arrives on Boxing Raise in the coming days.
Despite being a less than great fight it was a good win for Mori who stated that he was wanting to fight for a world title in 2020. It's hard to see him picking up a belt at the level next year, butt we do like the ambition of the 20 year old, who again fought with Ismael Salas in his corner just as he did back in September against Suntorn Panhom.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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