September 14th has been a pretty pivotal day in Asian boxing with several notable birthdays and major fight. These goes back almost 100 years in one of the most varied "On This Day" that we've done.
We'll start with the oldest event that we could find, which happened in 1922 when Filipino legend Pancho Villa stopped former Bantamweight world champion Johnny Buff to claim the American Flyweight title. Villa stopped Buff in 11 rounds for the title and less than a year later the Filipino became a national hero as he stopped Jimmy Wilde to claim the Flyweight world title. The win over Wilde saw Villa become the first Filipino world champion.
In 1979 we saw the birth of two notable fighters who, incidentally, fought each other. From Japan we saw the birth of Hiroyuki Enoki, a former OPBF and Japanese Featherweight champion. In Indonesian we had the birth of the legendary Chris John who was one of the longest reigning world champion in history as he held the WBA Featherweight title for the better part of a decade. The two men met in October 2008 when they were both 29 year old's and both certainly shortened each other's prime in a thriller. Their meeting saw John winning a clear decision though it was one of the best bouts in his career and was regarded as one of this few "wars".
Chris John isn't the only Indonesian to have celebrated on this day as compatriot Muhammad Rachman also has this day etched in his memory courtesy of his narrow win over Daniel Reyes. The win over Reyes, in 2004, saw Rachman becoming the 4th Indonesian to win a "big 4" world title following Chris John who had won his title a few months earlier.
One more bout of note on this day came in 1984 when as South Korean powerhouse Chong-Pal Park defended his IBF Super Middleweight title against the highly ranked Marvin Mack. Mack gave a great account of himself in Busan though came up short on all 3 card to give the Korean one of his many IBF title defenses. Park may not be fondly remembered by many now but he was one of the divisions first stars and deserves to remembered much, much more than he is now a days.
(Image courtesy of boxrec.com and is the poster of the Enoki/John fight)