Later today Japanese fans will get the chance to see the all-action Takuya Kogawa (24-4, 13), defending his Japanese Flyweight title against Tetsuma Hayashi (25-3-2, 9) in what is almost certainly going to be a thrilling, high tempo and exciting contest.
On Wednesday the two men took part in their weigh in and and both made weight whilst looking in great condition for the bout, which is a rematch between the two men.
Coming into the bout Kogawa will be seeking the first defence of the title he claimed, for the second time, whilst Hayashi will be hoping to claim the Japanese title at the third time of asking, having previously come up short against against both Kogawa and Suguru Muranaka.
Notably the winner of this will be expected to make a mandatory defense in early 2016 against Masayuki Kuroda as part of the Champions Carnival, in what would likely be another brilliant match up.
Kogawa and Hayashi face off in rematch for Japanese title!
(Image courtesy of Kogawa's blog)
There are some fighters that guarantee action, excitement and drama. One of those is 30 year old Japanese warrior Takuya Kogawa (25-4, 13) who was in action on Thursday at the Korakuen Hall.
The Flyweight warrior was in action defending the Japanese Flyweight title against former foe Tetsuma Hayashi (25-4-2, 9), who was having his third shot at a Japanese title, and once again Kogawa provided action and drama as he successfully retained the title.
To begin with things didn't look good for the champion who was dropped in the opening round as Hayashi got off to the dream start. The knockdown, which certainly came as a surprise, seemed to make Kogawa focus and from then on he began to establish himself.
Despite losing the first round 10-8 the champion had established the lead by the end of round 4 and was well up on the scorecards when they were announced after round 5. In fact the judges had given the champion every round but the first.
In the second half of the fight the champion began to slow down, he had roared back from the knockdown but wasn't able to keep up the work rate or intensity for 10 rounds. That was no issue however as he managed to control the action, with out needing to go into over-drive. In fact it wasn't until a huge effort in round 10 from the challenger that Kogawa looked in any trouble at all.
At the final bell it seemed like the challenger had given it a good shot but that his lasting highlight was the knockdown, which was never going to be enough by it's self to take the Japanese title from a fighter as good as Kogawa, who is expected to face Masayuki Kuroda next time out, in a fight in early 2016. That, like this one, is expected to be an action packed bout, though it's hard to bet against Kogawa who really is a criminally under-rated fighter.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Sources in Japan have informed us that Japanese Flyweight champion Takuya Kogawa (24-4, 13) will return to the ring on November 5th to defend his title for the first since reclaiming the belt, with a decision over Hiroki Saito back in July.
Not only has the source informed us of the date of Kogawa's return but also all the other key details.
The bout will take place at the Korakuen Hall and see Kogawa facing off against former foe Tetsuma Hayashi (25-3-2, 9), who Kogawa beat in a thrilling bout back in 2012.
For Kogawa the bout is a chance to defend his belt, as he begins his second reign as the Japanese national champion, whilst for Hayashi the bout is a third shot at a a title. He lost in his first title bout to Kogawa whilst more recently he came up shot against Suguru Muranaka, though Muranaka was stripped prior to that bout for failing to make weight.
Notably the bout hasn't been formerly announced as of yet though is expected to "become official" in the coming weeks with little other than dotting the i's and crossing the t's being needed.
We've included their first bout below for those who missed it.
(Image of Kogawa courtesy of Miyata Gym)
Yesterday we reported that Japanese fighter Suguru Muranaka (22-2-1, 7) had failed to make weight ahead of a Japanese Flyweight title defense against Tetsuma Hayashi (25-3-2, 9), and had been stripped of the title.
Today those two men traded blows with Muranaka looking to put the weight issues behind him, despite losing his title on the scales, and with Hayashi coming to the ring in the hopes of winning the title at his second time of asking.
To begin the fight it was Hayashi who started well. He started fast and got off to an early lead and seemed to win the first 3 rounds. The good start for Hayashi saw him being in the lead on a couple of cards with when they were announced at the end of round 5. At that point he was leading with scores of 48-47 and 49-47, though the other judge had Muranaka in the lead with a score of 48-47.
In the second half of the fight however it was Muranaka who took over. He showed his championship level experience with rounds 7 and 8 being big and clear rounds for the former champion who managed to get inside and control the bout at close range. It was amazing to see Muranaka fighting at such a pace so late into the fight considering his issues with the scales, though his trademark stamina certainly wasn't failing him.
By the final bell it seemed like there was only going to be one winner, Muranaka. He had taken the bout by the scruff of the next in the later rounds and made it his. The judges agreed awarding him the decision with scores of 97-93, and 96-94, twice. It was a deserved win for the former champion but one he'll have been disappointed with in some ways due to losing his title.
The next decision for the former champion is what he does next. He may well find himself controlling his weight better and continuing on as a Flyweight or, alternatively, making a move to Super Flyweight. Whatever the next move it's going to be interesting to follow the career of the always fun to watch Muranaka.
As for Hayashi we're hoping to see him come again. He's talented and young fighter with a lot to still achieve before his career is over.
Suguru Muranaka stripped of Japanese Flyweight title after failing to make weight
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
Suguru Muranaka apologises to Tetsuma Hayashi for failing to make weight for title bout, JBC say it's the first time in more than 40 years!
Yesterday we reported that Suguru Muranaka (21-2-1, 7) had failed to make weight ahead of his Japanese Flyweight title defense against Tetsuma Hayashi (25-2-2, 9). The move was an unprofessional one though that Muranaka is said to have been very regretful of and has apologised to Hayashi for the issues with the weigh in. Whilst it's admirable of the former champion it's still unprofessional that he did fail to make weight and he has, rightfully, been stripped by the JBC ahead of the bout.
The stripping of the title by JBC still allows Hayashi to win the belt later today, if he wins the bout, though has also created a little bit of history.
According to the JBC this is the first time they've had to strip a national champion for failing to make weight since since March 1967 when Katsuo Saito was stripped of the Japanese Bantamweight title. Saito weighed in at 119½lbs for that bout, 1½lbs over the Bantamweight limit. In the end it didn't matter on that particular occasion as Saito was stopped in 2 rounds by Ushiwakamaru Harada though it is interesting to note that when Saito returned to the ring he was fighting as a fully fledged Featherweight, completely skipping the Super Bantamweight division.
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