Yesterday we shared a story that Thai boxing news website Komthai (previously known as Thairec) were reporting, regarding the next bout for WBA "Super" and Ring Magazine Light Flyweight champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (14-0, 9) [京口 紘人]. Today that bout was confirmed, with Matchroom putting up the promotional image for the bout, and the share at large, which is now confirmed to be a world title triple header.
As previously reported Kyoguchi will be defending his WBA "super" and Ring Magazine titles against Mexican youngster Axel Aragon Vega (14-3-1, 8) on March 13th, as part of a card headlined by the rematch between Roman Gonzalez and Juan Francisco Estrada.
For Kyoguchi this is going to be his third defense of the title and he will be looking to join a rather short list of Japanese world champions to have successfully defended world titles on the road, and a very short list to have successfully defended a world title in the US.
Despite history potentially being against him the Japanese fighter will enter as a clear favourite and will be trying to build on a solid career which already includes wins against the likes of Jose Argumedo, Carlos Buitrago and Hekkie Budler.
As for Vega this will be his second world title bout, having previously lost a split technical decision to WBO Minimumweight champion Wilfredo Mendez. The youngster is a talented fighter, but we dare say this is a shot he's not ready for, and lacks the experience needed to take on someone like Kyoguchi, who is already a very, very experienced world level fighter.
The bout will take place at the American Airlines Center in Texas and will be shown around the world on DAZN.
If Kyoguchi wins here, as expected, he will likely face Thai youngster Thanongsak Simsri (14-0, 12) later in the year, with the Thai's team currently having a contract for a world title fight with Kyoguchi.
According to the reliable Komthai (previously known as Thairec) an agreement has been reached allowing WBA "Super" and Ring Magazine Light Flyweight champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (14-0, 9) [京口 紘人] to defend his titles in the US on March 13th.
Thairath have explained that the team of Thanongsak Simsri (14-0, 12) have allowed the bout, despite having a contractual agreement with Kyoguchi to be his next challenger, with the unbeaten Thai then having a shot at Kyoguchi after this March 13th bout.
The bout for Kyoguchi will see him take on 20 year old Mexican challenger Axel Aragon Vega (14-3-1, 8), who challenged for the WBO Minimumweight title in 2019 and lost a close decision to Wilfredo Mendez. There is, however, a clear gulf in style and ability between Mendez and Kyoguchi.
For Kyoguchi this will be his third defense, and his third bout on international soil. He made his international debut in Thailand, back in 2016, and won the Light Flyweight title in Macao in 2018. Despite not being his international debut, this will be his US debut, and his first bout outside of Asia. It will also be his first bout since October 2019, when he beat Tetsuya Hisada at the EDION Arena Osaka.
As for Vega the bout will be his second world title bout, and comes on the back of a 2020 win over multi-time world title challenger Saul Juarez.
Interestingly Thairath also reported that Thanongsak had been offered a chance to travel to the US himself, though declined due to the difficulties in travel. We suspect that his experience from last year, where spent months in Japan and had to go through quarantine twice, also played a factor in him declining a journey here.
For Thanongsak the focus is going to be getting back to training, which he's planning to do next week, and begin to focus on a return to the ring.
According to the Thairath report, the bout between Kyoguchi and Vega is be taking place on the under-card of Roman Gonzalez's rematch with Juan Francisco Estrada, which should give Kyoguchi a chance to really show a global audience what he can do, thanks to DAZN and Matchroom Sports.
When we talk about unlucky fighters it's hard to ignore unbeaten Thai challenger Thanongsak Simsri (14-0, 12) who travelled over to Japan in October, sat through 2 weeks of quarantine in Japan, whilst preparing for a bout with Ring Magazine and WBA Light Flyweight "Super" champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (14-0, 9) [京口 紘人].
That bout was cancelled after the weigh in when Kyoguchi tested positive for Covid19, and Simsri ended up returning to Thailand on Christmas eve. Sadly for him, and his team, they again had to quarantine for 2 weeks.
The youngster will return to his hometown of Sisaket in a few days time and the plan is then for begin preparations for his next bout.
The general plan is is that Simsri will fight in early 2021 in a tune up bout, before returning to Japan to face Kyoguchi, who is contractually obliged to fight Simsri unless the WBA order a mandatory challenger for the Japanese fighter.
Given Simsri and his team have now spend 4 weeks from the last 4 and a bit months in quarantine, due to no fault of their own, it's hard not to have some sympathy for the Thai youngster and his trainers who really have been incredibly unlucky recently.
(Image credit - Sodsroi Sawsangvean / Www.khaosod.co.th)
Back in November we had been expected to see WBA Light Flyweight "Super" champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (14-0, 9) [京口 紘人] defending his title against unbeaten Thai challenger Thanongsak Simsri (14-0, 12). Sadly however that bout was cancelled on the day of the event when Kyoguchi tested positive for Covid19.
The hope, then, was to re-arrange the bout for December 26th, but that failed to materialise and instead Simsri and his team decided that he would stay in Japan until December 24th then head back over to Thailand.
Today Simsri took part in an online press conference where he spoke about the future.
At that press conference Simsri was joined by Masaya Motoishi, the chairman of the Green Tsuda gym who act as Simsri's Japanese promoter. Interestingly Motoishi stated that there is an agreement between Simsri and Kyoguchi's team for the Thai to get a world title fight next year "We have signed a document that Tanon Sack will play a world title match as the first candidate for Kyoguchi." [Translated].
Apparently that should happen in Spring, as long as the WBA don't order a mandatory for Kyoguchi. However no date has been set aside for it as of yet.
Since being in Japan Simsri has obviously been disappointed, missing out on getting a shot in 2020 after spending 10 in quarantine in October, but he has apparently been staying busy. This has been seen with him sparring the Green Tsuda gym fighters who are set to be in action on December 27th and Motoishi has stated "I feel he has become mentally stronger. I felt that he would definitely be a world champion in the near future." [Translated]
Simsri is now expected to go back to Thailand tomorrow, and begin preparing for a bout in February, before facing Kyoguchi later in 2021. He himself stated "I'm sorry I couldn't play this time, but Kyoguchi got well soon and I'm sure to play next year. Let's do it" [Translated]
Whilst this has obviously been a frustrating time for the Thai it's fair to suggest that he has certainly learned tough lessons about the boxing world, and come through with his hunger still intact. Fingers crossed we see that hunger on the big stage next year, and we dare say that the delay to his world title shot will actually serve him well, allowing him time to mature and get some extra high level training before facing Kyoguchi.
Yesterday we reported that the planned WBA Light Flyweight "Super" title bout, between unbeaten champion Hiroto Kyoguchi (14-0, 9) [京口 紘人] and Thai challenger Thanongsak Simsri (14-0, 12) would not be taking place this year. Today that was confirmed by Watanabe Gym who have explained things from their side.
The gym had been hoping to fit the bout in December, after needing to cancel the contest in November due to Kyoguchi suffering from Covid19. The champion took time away from the gym to isolate before getting back to training. He then took further time away from the gym when he was feeling unwell in mid-November.
Watanabe have stated that due to new changes from the JBC and JPBA, which have been brought in to strengthen the response to covid19, the bout has been impossible to rescheduled.
The Tokyo based Watanabe gym have released the following statement:
"Thanks to Tanongsak Simsri and his Seconds, who came to Japan from Thailand in October to overcome the difficult isolation life, and Masaya Motoishi, the Chairman of Green Tsuda Boxing Gym, who worked hard every day. We apologize for the inconvenience. We have already paid the cancellation fee and expenses to the other party, and in the future, after making a firm agreement between the two parties, the players will return to Thailand." [Translated]
Following Komthai's article on Monday it appears the two sides have now come to an agreement on payments and the hope still seems to be to reschedule the bout for 2021. Sadly though, it's very unclear on whether the new changes from the JBC and JPBA will actually even allow notable, big scale boxing events in the new year, and what we may end up seeing is a lot of promoters putting shows off for the foreseeable future. Several promoters have shown concern for the changes, and we suspect there may be pushback in the new year from several gyms who will struggle through the new changes.
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!