Earlier today Japan's Ryuji Hara (17-0, 10) successfully claimed the OPBF Minimumweight title with a majority decision victory over the under-rated Filipino "Mr Shallow" Donny Mabao (21-21-1, 4).
Mabao, who was unable to win the title following his failure to make weight yesterday, where he was well over the weight, came to fight and made life very difficult for Hara who lacked the power to really hurt the bigger Mabao.
Although Hara's power didn't have the effect it had had on some of his previous opponent he did manage to hurt Mabao with body shots and in round 5 these became the key.
Unfortunately for Hara the bout turned out to be a bit more competitive than he may have expected coming in and although two of the judges had him as the winner with scores of 115-111 a third judge had the bout even at 113-113. Although many viewed Hara as the winner the fact all the cards were so close suggests that Hara isn't yet ready for a world title fight.
Although we don't think Hara is quite ready the fight himself seemed to indicate that he felt he was ready and that a world title was his next goal. At the moment we'd suggest he gets a few more fights under his belt though with Hara being an Ohashi Gym fighter their is every chance he will be getting a world title fight sooner rather than later.
(Photo courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
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