At the start of July we saw former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (27-3-1, 15) [伊藤 雅雪] score a TKO win over Valentine Hosokawa (25-9-3, 12) [細川 バレンタイン], in what was a surprisingly 1-sided beat down by the former world champion. After that bout we did assume this was probably the end for Hosokawa and today we saw Hosokawa confirm his career was over, through a YouTube video that he posted.
In the video Hosokawa went on to say thanks to the fans, for following his career and being interested, then explained that he would like to retire with the match against Ito being his last contest. He then added that he didn't feel blue, and it seemed very much that he was in a good place regarding this being the end of his career.
Hosokawa, one of the more popular Japanese domestic level fighters in recent years, has been a professional since 2006. During his long career he won the All Japan Rookie of the Year in 2008, fought for the OPBF title in 2013, won the JapaneseLight Welterweight title in 2017 and consistently put on great performances, aging like a fine wine to have some of his best bouts in his late 30's.
We would like to say thanks to Hosokawa for the great, action fights he has given us over the years, and want to wish him all the best in his post boxing career. His bouts against the likes of Shinya Iwabuchi, Min Wook Kim, Koichi Aso, Hiroki Okada and Vladimir Baez were brilliant to watch and for fans who haven't followed him we would strongly suggest hunting down some of his great bouts.
Earlier today from Korakuen Hall we had the latest Dynamic Glove show, and whilst not one of the better shows under the banner it was certainly not an awful show to watch.
In the opening bout we saw a 4 round Rookie of the Year bout at Super Featherweight as Wataru Ogata (1-1) [尾形 航] took on the ultra-aggressive Poro Watanabe (1-0) [渡辺 法郎].
Watanabe came out like a house on fire and easily took the first round, but could stop Ogata who spoiled, survived, and wore down Watanabe with his size and reach. From there on things got progressively easier for Ogata who landed the quality through the remaining 3 rounds to take a clear decision. Despite the loss for Watanabe we have become instant fans of him and his style, and really hope to see him back on TV in the future. As for Ogata he progresses to the next round of the East Japan Rookie of the Year competition.
The second bout, also an East Japan Rookie of the Year bout, saw Yusuke Konishi (3-4-1, 3) [小西 佑亮] and Shinji Yamaguchi (0-1) [山口 真司] throw down from the off giving us a very short, but very exciting little war.
The fight started with Yamaguchi on the offensive, and he really aggressive, but very defensively flawed, through the opening moments, even dropping Konishi. Konishi beat the count and looked composed, despite Yamaguchi trying to take him out when the bout resumed. Sadly for Yamaguchi his aggression left him open and a brilliant left hook landed clean, dropping Yamaguchi hard, with the referee waving the bout off. This lasted just 106 seconds but was intense, exciting and fantastic to watch.
In another East Japan Rookie of the Year bout we saw the highly determined Takumi Hashimoto (1-1-1) [橋本 拓海] clash with the skilled Kota Hasegawa (1-0-1) [長谷川 耕太] in what turned out to be a very compelling 4 rounder between very different types of fighters.
The smaller, more aggressive, Hashimoto was constantly applying pressure, trying to make things into a war, whilst Hasegawa spent the first two rounds cleverly neutralising him, boxing and moving, countering brilliantly and really showing his class. As the bout went on however Hashimoto began getting closer and closer, leading to the final couple of rounds getting messier, as the range wasn't there as much for Hasegawa. Despite the messier action it was Hasegawa who continued to land the better shots. Despite the better shots landing from Hasegawa two of the judges had this one a draw, thankfully however the other had Hasegawa as the winner, and he progresses in the tournament due to the majority point rule.
In the co-feature we saw the once touted Mirai Imagawa (12-5, 4) [今川 未徠] score his 4th straight win as he stopped Yuji Okinori (10-7-2, 3) [興法 裕二] in what was a rather slow and tedious affair at times.
The bout lacked drama lacked action and drama early on, with both men being known more for their skills than their power and work rate. It made for a rather tame fight through 5 rounds as both men jostled for angles and positioning, though did have a few thrilling moments, when the two traded shots in short lived exchanges.
In round 6 however things all changed after a brilliant single left hand on the chin from Imagawa crumpled Okinori to the canvas, with the referee quickly waving the bout off. This was a dramatic KO and an eye catching finish to what was, genuinely, a poor fight.
Sadly Okinori needed to be taken out of the ring on a stretcher, and no update on his condition has been released as of yet.
Going into the show we had high expectations for the main event, which was between former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (27-3-1, 15) [伊藤 雅雪] and former Japanese 140lb champion Valentine Hosokawa (25-9-3, 12) [細川 バレンタイン]. Unfortunately however this thrilling match up lacked drama from the off and was a surprisingly one-sided affair, with Ito dominant from the first round to the eventual stoppage in round 8.
Ito started incredibly sharply and found the range for his straight right hand within a minute of the fight, and from then on he rarely missed any. As the bout went on however he began to add more shots into the action, landing crisp jabs, devastating left hooks, some spiteful body shots and letting 3 and 4 punch combinations go. Hosokawa, to his credit, was taking shots cleanly, and looking to come back, but was struggling to have any sort of sustained success. Sadly for Hosokawa he was smothered and held up close, out boxed at range and forced to take clean, solid head shots on his way way in.
By round 6 a stoppage was looking like a foregone conclusion, and in fairness had it been anyone other than Hosokawa, who has proven his toughness over the years, we suspect his team would have thrown in the towel and saved their man. Instead Hosokawa continued, trying all he could to turn things around, despite being shaken time and time again.
In round 8 a huge shot from Ito hurt Hosokawa, and a massive follow up flurry had the veteran reeling, taking more clean head shots despite somehow remaining on his feet. It was then that referee Katsuhiko Nakamura said enough was enough and saved Hosokawa from himself.
Sadly aged 40 this is probably the end for Hosokawa, who has long been a favourite here at Asianboxing.info, though his career has been a true success and we're glad to have been able to follow so many of his fights in recent years. As for Ito this is, probably, the best we've seen from him and recent work under the watchful eye of Tomohiro Ebisu, seems to have really helped him develop. He looked hungrier than usual, his jab and hook were much improved, and he really looked fantastic .
Tomorrow at Korakuen Hall, and live on G+, we'll see former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (26-3-1, 14) [伊藤 雅雪] battle against former Japanese 140lb champion Valentine Hosokawa (25-8-3, 12) [細川繁] in a brilliantly matched 10 rounder at Lightweight. Today, ahead of their bout, the two men took part in their weigh in and both men came in bang on the Lightweight limit.
After making weight both men spoke to the press in Japan.
Ito, fighting as a fully fledged Lightweight for the third time, stated that this time he hadn't lost muscle to make weight and was in the best shape he's been since moving up to 135lbs. It was also revealed that Ito seriously considered retiring after losing to Hironori Mishiro (10-0-1, 3) [三代大訓] last December, however he decided to continue his career following discussions and feeling like that shouldn't be his last bout. It's also worth noting that he has began training under the guidance of former Japanese Middleweight champion Tomohiro Ebisu, who was a huge puncher. The focus of the training seems to be on becoming busier and less passive in the ring.
Ito also revealed that he was envious of Masayoshi Nakatani for his recent bout with Vasyl Lomachenko.
As for Hosokawa, who lost last time out to Shuichiro Yoshino (13-0, 10) [吉野 修一郎], he explained there should be no merit between losers, but explained that this is a match that everyone is interested in, and in fairness he's right. It is an excellent match up and one worthy of real attention. Both guys might have lost last time out, but they do still make for a very, very interesting bout. As for his tactics, it seems he's going to look to get up close and out work Ito, though admitted his tactical options were limited here.
Notably tickets for this one were sold out in just 2 days, however, as mentioned, it will be aired live on G+ for those who failed to get tickets.
Yesterday we reported that former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (26-3-1, 14) [伊藤 雅雪] would be back in the ring on July 3rd to face Valentine Hosokawa (25-8-3, 12) [細川繁] in a real must win bout for the two easy to like fighters. Since then more details have emerged, confirmed the location and broadcast details of the event, though the under-card is yet to be confirmed. There is however suspicion that a Japanese Youth title bout could be included as a major chief support bout.
The bout will be held at Korakuen Hall, which was the expected venue, will be held at the 604th Dynamic Glove event, confirming that it will be aired on G+. At the moment it's not been confirmed for a live broadcast, though it seems likely to be live given the quality of the main event and the date of the show, with most Dynamic Glove shows being aired live if held on the first Saturday of the month.
One other finer details is that the bout is now said to be a 10 round Lightweight bout.
The bout genuinely is a must win for both men. Ito has gone 1-2 in his last 3, with losses to Jamel Herring and Hironori Mishiro (10-0-1, 3) [三代大訓], and seems a long way from getting a chance to become a 2-weight world champion whilst the 40 year old Hosokawa was last seen losing to losing to JBC, OPBF and WBO Asia Pacific Lightweight champion Shuichiro Yoshino (13-0, 10) [吉野 修一郎]. The winner will almost certainly remain in the mix, at least at regional title level, but for the loser retirement likely looms.
Over the weekend news broke that former WBO Super Featherweight champion Masayuki Ito (26-3-1, 14) [伊藤 雅雪] would be returning to the ring in July to face Valentine Hosokawa (25-8-3, 12) [細川繁], in what should be a genuinely thrilling match up.
The bout wasn't officially announced, though that is expected to come in the near future, though it was essentially confirmed by Hosokawa on his own YouTube channel, who revealed the bout would be taking place on July 3rd.
For Ito this will be his first bout since suffering an upset loss at the end of 2020, against Hironori Mishiro (10-0-1, 3) [三代大訓], and he desperately needs a win of value after a poor couple of years that have seen him lose the WBO title to Jamel Herring and suffer the aforementioned loss to Mishiro. Those losses sandwich a low key win against Ruben Manakane, from September 2019, and we need to go back to 2018 to find his last win of note. Aged 30 Ito cetainly still has plenty of time left in his career, but another loss would see him in a seriously deep hole.
As for Hosokawa this will be his first bout since losing to JBC, OPBF and WBO Asia Pacific Lightweight champion Shuichiro Yoshino (13-0, 10) [吉野 修一郎] last September. Aged 40 time is quickly ticking down on Hosokawa's career, but he's aged like a fine wine and has had his best performances in his mid to late 30's, and he could well have another of those impressive performances here.
The bout is expected to have an official announcement in the coming weeks, with a venue and under-card announced, but given Hosokawa's statements on YouTube it seems clear we can mark the date on the calendar and get very excited about this potential thriller of a bout.
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