On Friday WBC Bantamweight champion Shinsuke Yamanaka (25-0-2, 17) [山中慎介] recorded his 10th defense of the world title and since then we've been drip fed the plans for his next bout.
Firstly we were informed that the plan was to get Yamanaka back in the ring in August and now we've been informed that his team at attempting to set up a unification bout with IBF champion Lee Haskins (32-3, 14), who incidentally won the title by beating former Yamanaka victim Ryosuke Iwasa last year for the interim title and then being upgraded.
It seems that Teiken representatives are now set to begin to negotiate preliminary terms with the Haskins camp and will be trying to secure a deal in the near future.
Before Yamanaka thinks too much about his ring return he has stated that he is wanting to rest and spend time with his family, before retuning to the gym. It's clear there is no rush for him to get back in the gym and that he's being allowed to saviour one of his toughest victories.
For Haskins it's unclear if he'll be able to fight an interim bout, as he's been inactive since beating Iwasa last June and given the Englishman's style, which relies heavily on reflexes and movement, it may be unwise to fight Yamanaka after a 14 month lay off. Whilst that lay off isn't his fault, given that Randy Caballero failed to make weight for a bout with Haskins, it is something that could be a real issue for the under-rated 32 year old.
It would seem likely that if the bout is made Teiken would be pushing for it to take place in Japan, with NTV backing Yamanaka heavily. Yamanaka has however stated in the past that he is open to fighting away from home for a big fight, and a unification contest would certainly be a big one.
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