Earlier today Watanabe gym announced that Nihito Arakawa (28-6-1, 17) [荒川 仁人] had officially vacated the Japanese Lightweight title, as he begins the chase for a the WBO Asia Pacific Lightweight title, currently head by Daud Cino Yordan (36-3-0-1, 24). The decision, which was offically made with the JBC back on November is mixed in some ways.
On one hand it does rob us of a potentially brilliant Japanese title fight in 2017 between Arakawa and the heavy handed Shuhei Tsuchiya (21-4, 17) [土屋 修平], who had shared a card back in September and looked like they were on a collision course for the near future. Whilst Tsuchiya will still get the chance to fight for a Japanese title we'd have loved to have seen him trading blows with Arakawa.
On the other hand a bout between Arakawa and Yordan has the ingredients of a very special and exciting bout between two men who love to fight. It's a bout that'd be big in Japan and Indonesia and could, potentially, be a dark horse contender for a FOTY mention given the styles of the two men. Ofcourse sticking with this potential there is a chance that the timing of Arakawa's decision is to speed up a potential showdown with Yordan for early 2017, or even late 2017, rather than be unsure on where his focus is going to be.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
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