We often get crossroads fights and fights that both men "must win" if they are to remain relevant. We had one such fight earlier today in Osaka when Hirofumi Mukai (11-3-2, 1) battled against Konosuke Tomiyama (24-8-1, 8).
Going in to the bout both men really needed a big win and despite both having fought for world titles in the past neither had much in terms of career momentum coming in to this bout.
Tomiyama had come in to the bout having lost 2 of his last 3, including a 3rd round loss to Kentaro Masuda in a Japanese title fight, and was almost 7 years removed from career defining OPBF title victory and more than 6 years removed from his WBA Super Flyweight world title bout with Nobuo Nashiro. On the other hand Mukai had lost 2 of his last 5, including a 9th round TKO to Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in a WBC Super Flyweight title fight.
Despite both men having faltering careers this was strangely one sided with Mukai always looking a step ahead. The younger fighter showed his speed and movement to keep Tomiyama at the end of his 1-2's. Tomiyama did manage to make a few rounds interesting, and did leave Mukai with a small cut, but on the whole was out boxed by a very comfortable looking Mukai. In the end the cards were never in much doubt with Mukai winning 79-75, 78-75 and 79-73.
At 32 it's fair to think Tomiyama's career may well be over. The charismatic and fun fighter has been a pro since 2004 and he's managed to entertain fans but isn't likely to be given another big chance. As for the 29 year Mukai there is still life in his career though he's probably a level below the domestic title scene and will need to hope that he gets lucky if he's to reach the heights that were once hoped for him.
(Image courtesy of boxingnews.jp)
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!