The Japan Vs Mexico rivalry has given us some incredible fights over the years and today we look at one of those fights for this week's Closet Classic, and this may go down as one of the most over-looked fights in that great rivalry. Despite the fact it's a relatively knew fight and was a sensational war, taking place only a few years ago in 2013. This fight saw knockdowns being traded, power shots thrown and an absolutely incredibly amount of punishment being handed out.
Takashi Miura (25-2-2, 19) vs Sergio Thompson (27-2, 25)
Japan's Takashi Miura had won the WBC Super Featherweight title in April 2013, battering Gamaliel Diaz into submission in 9 rounds. Miura hadn't impressed as a boxer, losing a number of rounds to Diaz, but his power was a difference maker. He had dropped Diaz in rounds 3,6,7 and 9 to secure his victory. Prior to winning the title Miura had been best known for his 2011 bout with WBA champion Takashi Uchiyama, dropping Uchiyama before being stopped himself, and the one thing that was clear, through his career, was that Miura could punch. Going into this bout that power was seen as being his key, as getting a decision on the road is never easy.
Mexican fighter Sergio "Yeyo" Thompson was a relative unknown outside of Mexico, until 2012, when he upset Jorge Linares. That was his big break out win and he followed it up with 5 straight stoppages in the 14 months that followed, leading him to his world title shot with Miura. Although not well known it was clear that Thompson could punch. He stopping people left, right and centre and was unbeaten since a split decision in September 2010 against Alisher Rakhimov, since which he had gone 13-0 (12). Coming into the fight with Miura the Mexican puncher was 29, and it really seemed like it was now or never. A loss here and there was a chance he was never going to get another world title bout, especially with his 30th birthday just a few weeks away.
From the very round round it was clear than neither man wanted to hear the final bell, in fact that should have been obvious before even a punch was thrown. Despite that neither man wanted to take too many risks, and they were both looking for the angle and position to land their power shots. They were both stood at mid range, looking to land their hooks. It seemed "Yeyo" did enough to take a relative quiet opening round, but it wasn't long until the touch paper was lit in round 2 and bombs started to be landed by both men, with Thompson being dropped part way through the round. It was the first of 3 knockdowns between the men who really tried to crack through each others chins.
This wasn't an all action war, though was high action, and got better and better as the fight went on. The deliberate early pace, that built to a growing crescendo made for an edge of the seat spectacle, and it had a continual feeling that a single punch, from either, would be the undoing of the other man. Jabs were almost non-existent, with hooks, crosses, uppercuts being the order of the day.
This was war, this was action, this was brilliant!
When we have some free time we're hoping to add a series of fun articles to the site. Hopefully these will be enjoyable little short features