Earlier today on TV Osaka we got the chance to see a title double header from the EDION Arena Osaka, for free and right around the world.
The first of two title title bouts saw veteran WBO Asia Pacific Middleweight champion Yuki Nonaka (34-11-3, 10) [野中 悠樹] score his second defense, as he easily over-came former Japanese domestic amateur standout Koki Koshikawa (9-3, 6) [越川孝紀], who was fighting as a Middleweight for the first time.
From the off the 43 year old Nonaka looked the more relaxed and the more comfortable in the ring and was pretty much in control through out the bout. Koishikawa, to his credit, came to fight but he lacked the accuracy and tenacity needed to even test Nonaka.
Through out the bout the calm, accurate, relaxed boxed of Nonaka saw him landing at will on Koshikawa, who was left cut, bruised and beaten up through the middle portion of the fight. In the later stages Koshikawa had to pass several doctor's inspections due to his cuts and, whilst they weren't bad cuts no one would have complained had the ringside doctor said enough was enough, especially as Nonaka began landing so devastating straight left hands, at will, on the head of Koshikawa.
After 12 rounds we went to the score cards with two judges having this 119-109 to Nonaka and the third having it an alarming close 115-113 to the champion for the unanimous decision.
For Koshikawa it's almost impossible to know where he goes from this loss, especially given the early expectation. As for Nonaka, the focus seems to be on landing a world title fight sooner rather than later, but with his 44th birthday come later this year it'd be a huge surprise to see him land a major fight before his career comes to an end.
The second title fight on the show saw youngster Riku Kano (18-4-1, 9) [加納 陸] make his first defense of the WBO Asia Pacific Light Flyweight title as he stopped Takumi Sakae (22-4-1, 16) [榮拓海] in a really interesting bout.
Sakae got off to a good start, dropping Kano in round 2 of the bout, and again in round 4, as he seemed well on the way to scoring a notable upset. Sadly for the challenger however he couldn't finish off the champion and instead the body shots of Kano seemed to take the wind out of Sakae in rounds 6, 7 and 8.
Heading into round 9 it seemed the momentum was with Kano and he knew it as he continued to up his tempo against a tired and exhausted Sake, eventually forcing the referee to jump in and save the challenged, who seemed out on his feet.
Tomorrow at the EDION Arena Osaka fight fans will get a number of notable bouts. One of those will see WBO Asia Pacific Middleweight champion Yuki Nonaka (33-11-3, 10) [野中 悠樹] defending his title against Koki Koshikawa (9-2, 6) [越川孝紀] in a bout that really should be regarded as a must win for both men.
Today, ahead of their bout, the two men took part in their weigh in for the contest, with both men making the 160lb limit with no issues.
On the scales the 43 year old Nonaka came in bang on the 160lb limit and he looked in amazing shape. It was hard to believe that he was a 43 year old who had been out of the ring for around 2 years. At the weigh in he stated he was in perfect condition for this bout and would be showing what he's been training. Notably a win here is expected to see him begin knocking on a potential world title bout, even at the age of 43.
Koshikawa looked a lot less impressive on the scales, though came in at the same weight as Noanaka, 160lbs dead on. He looked fleshy, and like a man who is naturally a Welterweight fighting at Middleweight. He explained that weight loss was difficult, but after making weight he did seem relaxed and began to take on a lot of water.
For fans wanting to watch the bout it will be aired live on TV Osaka's YouTube channel tomorrow, and will be one of two title fights on the show, which will promoted by Taisei Gym.
Related - Veteran Nonaka takes on flawed Koshikawa!
Yesterday Taisei Gym announced that they had postponed their next show, which was originally planned for June 6th, and have pushed it back to July 23rd due to the issues that are still affecting Osaka in regards to the on going State of Emergency. As a result the show now falls on a holiday, but no changes, other than date, have been made to the event.
The card is a genuinely solid double header. One of the main bouts will see Riku Kano (17-4-1, 8) [加納 陸] defending the WBO Asia Pacific Light Flyweight title against the once touted Takumi Sakae (22-3-1, 16) [榮拓海], in a solid match up between two men tipped for big things, who haven't yet managed to deliver on early promise. The other will see WBO Asia Pacific Middleweight champion Yuki Nonaka (33-11-3, 10) [野中 悠樹] defending his title against Koki Koshikawa (9-2, 6) [越川孝紀], in what is a must win bout for both men.
As was originally planned, the show will take place at EDION Arena Osaka, and will be shown online via the TVOsaka YouTube channel.
Sadly this could be a sign of things to come and their may, still, be shows set for June in Osaka that could end up needing to be postponed due to the current situation in Japan.
Earlier today Taisei Marumoto, the chairman of the Taisei Gym, held a press conference to announce the next show he would be promoting, and credit to him as he has managed to put together a pretty solid show for June 6th including two WBO Asia Pacific title fights.
The main event of the show will see Taisei promoted youngster Riku Kano (17-4-1, 8) [加納 陸] make his first defense of the WBO Asia Pacific Light Flyweight title, as he takes on the once touted Takumi Sakae (22-3-1, 16) [榮拓海].
Kano won the title last year, with a narrow decision win over Ryoki Hirai (13-7-1, 4) [平井亮輝] in November. It was among the biggest wins for Kano, who turned professional at a young age and was groomed for success, though has failed to come close to the heights expected of him. Although he's not gone all the way, as many had expected, he is still only 23 and has scored notable wins over the likes of Hirai, Merlito Sabillo and Pigmy Kokietgym.
Sakae impressed early in his career, winning the 2013 All Japan Rookie of the Year, and seemed to be getting groomed as the next big star from Fukuoka. Sadly however his unbeaten run came to an end in 2016, when he lost to Tatsuya Fukuhara in a bout for the Japanese national title. Since that loss he has gone 8-2-1, including losses to Ryoki Hirai and Norihito Tanaka. Notably he hasn't been seen in the ring since beating Stevanus Nana Bau way back in September 2019 and it will be around 21 months between that fight and this one one with Kano.
The other WBO Asia Pacific title bout will see veteran Yuki Nonaka (33-11-3, 10) [野中 悠樹] defending his WBO Asia Pacific Middleweight title against Koki Koshikawa (9-2, 6) [越川孝紀].
The 43 year old Nonaka, the oldest male boxer in Japan, has been out of the ring since September 2019, when he successfully defended his title against Korean challenger Hyun Min Yang. The following month he signed with American promoter Greg Cohen, but plans to fight in 2020 were dashed by the Covid19 pandemic, essentially costing Nonaka a potentially huge bout in the US. At his best he was a fantastically talented and relaxed boxer, but it's hard to know what he'll have after 21 months out, and aged 43.
Koshikawa on the other hand was a former amateur standout who turned professional with a decent amount of buzz but his career stumbled early on and now, aged 30 he desperately needs a break out win. He started his professional career under the guidance of former world champion Celes Kobayashi and in 2019 he challenged Japanese Light Middleweight champion Hironobu Matsunaga [松永 宏信], being stopped by the under-rated Matsunaga. Since then he has transferred from the Celes gym, and this bout will be his first since joining the Ichiriki gym in February.
As well as the two title fights this card will also feature 5 under-card bouts.
As with the last Taisei Show, from back in November, this show will be streamed in full on TV Osaka's official YouTube channel.
(Image credit - Boxmob.jp)
Yesterday Japanese veteran Yuki Nonaka (33-11-3, 10) [野中 悠樹] received the Amagasaki City Sports Special Award, due to the impact he has made on the city in regards to sport.
Today it was also confirmed that he has moved from the Ioka Gym to the Atsumi Gym, something that had been reported in February but never really made too public as the press conference to announce it was cancelled, due to the outbreak of a certain issue that has now become a massive global problem.
At the moment it's unclear when Nonaka will return to the ring, but at the age of 42 time is ticking on his hopes of fighting for a world title. He really needs the global issue that is forcing fights and events to be cancelled to be cleared up shortly, though sadly that's not looking likely given how wide spread, and quickly growing, it is.
We want to congratulate Nonaka on the award.
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