On March 17th we're set for a bit of a boxing oddity as OPBF Minimumweight champion Lito Dante (16-11-4, 8) battles against Masataka Taniguchi (12-3, 7) [谷口将隆]. The bout will bot only see Dante defending his OPBF crown but will also also be for the vacant Japanese Minimumweight title.
With the show being fought under the "Guts Fighting" banner we know the show wouldn't be getting a live TV broadcast, however TBS have revealed the delay in their broadcast will not be a long one.
TBS, the channel will will air the fight, have scheduled the bout to be shown on the same week, with an image on their website stating March 18th at 2:05am. Given how Japanese TV schedules work, we suspect it will technically be March 19th 2:05am local time, but that still isn't much of a delay.
Sadly most Guts Fighting broadcasts do only show case the main event, which is a shame, but still this is one of the quickest turn arounds for a tape delay broadcast in recent years in Japan.
On New Year's Eve the Ota City General Gymnasium played host to a show with a staggering 6 title bouts on it. Sadly only two of those were shown live on Japanese channel TBS.
That meant that we never got the chance to see the WBO Asia Pacific Minimumweight title fight, featuring unbeaten champion Ginjiro Shigeoka (5-0, 4) [重岡銀次朗] defending against former world title challenger Rey Loreto (25-15, 17), or the WBO female Super Flyweight title bout, between Miyo Yoshida (14-1) [吉田 実代] and Chinese challenger Li Ping Shi (5-3, 2).
Thankfully we now know when those bouts will be televised, with TBS set to air them in just over a week's team on a tape delay basis as part of their semi-regular Guts Fighting series.
From the TBS website the bouts will air on January 20th at 2:05, though from a Japanese TV guide it appears the bout will actually be shown on the 21st at 2:05. It's unclear if they will be shown in full, though given how long they went it wouldn't be a surprise to see both aired in an unedited form during a 1 hour broadcast slot.
Although they'll have taken 3 weeks to be aired, we suspect the wait will be worth it, with the fan cam footage of Shigeoka's making it seem like that was a very fun fight.
At the moment it's unclear whether TBS plan to air the WBO Asia Pacific Super Bantamweight title bout between Yusaku Kuga (19-4-1, 13) [久我勇作] and Filipino fighter Jhunriel Ramonal (17-8-6, 10), though given how short that was it would be no surprise to see them slip it on to this broadcast.
On December 10th OPBF Super Featherweight champion Hironori Mishiro (8-0-1, 3) [三代大訓] will make his next defense, as he takes on 23 year old challenger Yoshimitsu Kimura (12-1, 7) [木村吉光]. Today we can confirm that that bout is set to be shown on TV, albeit on tape delay, as part of TBS's "Guts Fighting" series of shows.
For Mishiro the bout will be his 4th defense and promotional company Watanabe Gym seem to view his rise as something worthy of serious attention. They have already pushed him on to the fast track to the top, and he won the title in just his 6th professional bout, taking a decision over Carlo Magali. Although he failed to unify the title with the Japanese belt, fighting to a draw in 2018 with Masaru Sueyoshi, it's clear that his team have big plans for him, and likely see him as their successor to former WBA world champion Takashi Uchiyama. Since winning the belt not only has Mishiro retained it, with the draw, against Sueyoshi but also scored notable wins over Takuya Watanabe and Ryo Takenaka.
As for Kimura this will be a second shot a belt for him, following a competitive loss to Richard Pumicpic for the WBO Asia Pacific Featherweight title. Since that loss Kimura has moved up in weight and has built some momentum coming in to this bout.
The bout will be aired aired just days later, with the broadcast also expected to help promote the New Year's Eve card which TBS will be showing live.
At the moment it's unclear whether TBS will also air some form of footage of the very interesting chief support bout between Yudai Shigeoka (1-0, 1) [重岡優大] and OPBF Minimumweight champion Lito Dante (16-10-4, 8).
(Image - TBS)
Back in September news broke that WBO Super Flyweight champion Kazuto Ioka (24-2, 14) [井岡一翔] would be returning to the ring on December 31st to defend his title in a mandatory defense against Puerto Rican Jeyvier Cintron (10-1-0-1, 5).
Today that bout was officially announced, with Ioka holding a press conference to confirm the details of the bout, and talk about the contest.
Although not every was confirmed, what was did match up with what we'd already reported.
The bout between the two will indeed take place on December 31st at Ota Ward Gymnasium and will be shown on TBS. That confirmed a previous reported. There was no under-card bouts announced, though a deal is said to have been getting finalised recently and will be announced in the near future. That is said to be a huge Flyweight bout and will feature one of the other fights associated with TBS, meaning.
Ioka seemed to suggest that fighting on New Year's Eve allowed him to end the year happy. To prepare for Cintron he would be participating in a US training came from end of October, with his wife and son accompanying him over to the US. He explained that having family around had a positive impact on him, and he might bring his son into the ring if he wins against Cintron
In regard to Cintron we saw Ioka admit that he had "only seen the footage of the fight with Eto" though admit that "he moves well" and had a "a high level of skill because of his time as an amateur".
Unlike last year, where TBS's scheduled time frame for Ioka's fight was known before the bout was announced, this year the bout has been announced before TBS have clarified their end of year activities. Whilst it's unclear what TBS will doing for their general end of year show, we're personally hoping for a return to KYOKUGEN as they were always wonderfully entertaining and fun.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
On July 27th we get a stacked card from Dangan and Watanabe. The hope had long been for the card to be made available live on Boxing Raise, given that Dangan were involved in the promotion of the show. Sadly however it's now clear that Boxing Raise will not have the show live.
Instead Japanese premium service Paravi will have the card streamed live online, allowing only Japanese viewers to watch the card which features a brilliant triple header of title fights.
The show will be headlined by OPBF Super Featherweight champion Hironori Mishiro (7-0-1, 2) [三代大訓] defending his belt against former OPBF Featherweight champion Ryo Takenaka (18-4-1, 11) [竹中 良], in what looks like a solid third defense for the champion.
As well as the main event the other title bouts on the card will see Japanese Bantamweight champion Yuta Saito (12-9-3, 9) [齊藤裕太] taking on mandatory challenger Yusuke Suzuki (10-3, 7) [鈴木悠介] and the next bout in the career of the highly touted Ginjiro Shigeoka (3-0, 2) [重岡銀次朗] , who faces Filipino foe Clyde Azarcon (15-2-1, 5) for the WBO Asia Pacific Minimumweight title.
Although the live broadcast news is hugely disappointing it is worth noting that TBS will show parts of the card, as part of their "Guts Fighting" series, just 2 days later on free TV, giving the fighters a chance to show what they can do to a wider audience than Boxing Raise could ever manage. In a way this is a silver lining to the gray cloud.
Mishiro takes on Takenaka in latest OPBF title defense
Saito and Suzuki battle for Japanese crown
Shigeoka goes for regional title against Azarcon!
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