Just a day after the all-Japanese female mega-fight between Naoko Yamaguchi and Naoko Fujioka the women again take centre stage. This time however Japanese fans are going to be treat to a double header of female title action.
The show, “Earnest Efforts”, is promoted by Celes and will be held at the Korakuen Hall and will feature just six bouts, though with two of those being world title bouts it's hard to complain about the show.
The opening bout will see debutants colliding with Niwa Shohei (0-0) fighting Akao Bunya (0-0) in a Light Flyweight 4 rounder. This is one of several bouts in the 108lbs division which also includes the shows second bout which will see Toshihiro Kurihara (4-6-1, 3) fighting Dragon Jun (4-10, 2). Kunihara comes in to the bout looking to end a 3 fight losing streak whilst Jun looks to bounce back from back-to-back losses.
In the first of two contests scheduled for 8 rounds Ryuji Yokoyama (9-1, 3) will take on Yasuhiro Sakurai (6-15) at a contracted 50.5KG. This contest will see Sakurai trying to end a 9 fight losing streak that dates back well over 3 years whilst Yokoyama will be seeking his 8th successive victory. This contest will be followed by one between Daisuke Yokoyama (14-5, 6) and Kazunari Fujisawa (9-10-4, 2). On the face of it Yokoyama should get past Fujisawa with out too many problems, especially considering Fujisawa is win-less in 8.
The first of the two world title fights on the show will see Naoko Shibata (10-3, 3) attempt to claim the vacant IBF Light Flyweight title as she battles Mexican Alondra Garcia (8-0, 1). For Shibata this is a third world title fight and one that she should be a big favourite to win considering the fact she has been competitive in her previous two. For Garcia however this is a huge step up and one that may have come too soon for the Mexican.
In the second world title fight of the day the WBC Atomweight champion Momo Koseki (16-2-1, 4) will attempt to make the 12th defence of her title as she battles Mexico's Nora Cardoza (8-4-2, 4). This on paper is just as uncompetitive as the other world title fight in all honesty, though should allow Koseki some action after almost 6 months out of the ring.
As well as the action in Japan we also expect to see a number of fights with an Asian interest in the US.
In a Light Heavyweight contest we're expecting to see Russian Medzhid Bektemirov (12-0, 9) in action whilst his compatriot Konstantin Ponomarev (21-0, 10) will make his US debut. Both of these bouts are in the US though on totally different cards.
We're sorry for the past week or so of no updates, we've been having issues that have been keeping us from updating the site recently. Thankfully those issues have been sorted and normal service will be resumed this week, starting with a preview of Tuesday's upcoming action.
Tuesday's action is shared across Hong Kong and Japan with two noteworthy cards that are sure to grab the attention of boxing fans.
In the Korakuen Hall there is a 6 bout card that features several promising young Japanese fighters. Arguably the biggest name on the card is Kenji Kubo (1-1) who is looking to bounce back from his stunning loss to Rey Megrino back in January. Kubo will be matched a little softer than he has been so far as he takes on Galih Susanto (6-2, 1) from Indonesia. Although this is supposedly an easier bout Susanto did give Denkaosan Kaovichit a tough bout earflier this year and is better than his record indicates.
If Kubo is the biggest name (due to his experience in other fields) then Hiroki Okada (5-0, 5) is the most promising. The unbeaten Okada is to take on the experienced Indonesian Heri Andriyanto (19-15-2, 10). Whilst on paper this is a mismatch Andriyanto did end the stoppage streak of Shuhei Tsuchiya just over a year ago. Aged 23 Okada is one of Japan's most exciting prospects but will need to pass this tough test before we can say too much more.
Other than Okada there is only 1 other unbeaten fighter on the card, Gosuke Seki (12-0-2, 2) who faces Kenta Takahashi (10-5-2, 3). This is a rematch of a bout from last year which saw next to nothing seperating the two men and the judges ruling it a draw.
The other 3 bouts on the card include Ryota Itoyama (9-4, 5) taking on Yuichi Ideta (13-7-1, 7) with Ideta trying to end a 5 fight winless streak, the very evenly matched Tonko Nakagawa (11-5, 4) and Yoshihiro Utsumi (10-4-1, 5) fighting in a Super Bantamweight bout and Masahito Igawa (10-7-1, 3) looking to return after over 2 years out as he takes on Masatoshi Nakamura (6-6, 3).
In Hong Kong local star Rex Tso (8-0, 5) fights his toughest bout to date as he takes on former world champion Wandee Singwancha (67-16-1, 18). Tso will be hoping to make the second defense of his WBC Asia Council Continental Super Flyweight title. Despite the huge gulf in experience he should have enough size advantage and youth to defeat his Thai opponent.
The Tso bout is just 1 of 3 titles bouts on the Hong Kong card with Thai Ekapol Yothinpanawet (13-1, 9) looking to claim the vacant WBC Asian Boxing Council Light Welterweight title as he takes on Filipino Mike Tumbaga (12-18-2, 6) in the only bout for a vacant title.
Arguably the most significant title bout on the card is the WBC Atomweight title fight between the Japanese champion Momo Koseki (15-2-1, 3) and Eun-Young Huh (6-1-1). Kosecki is on a 13 fight unbeaten streak including 10 defenses of her title and will be looking to once again back up her claim of being the best Atomweight on the planet.
The card's only 6 round bout sees Japanese based Ugandan Festus Omondi (8-4, 6) taking on the experienced Edgar Gabejan (23-29-6, 7). This is a bit of a toss up though we would favour Gabejan due to his experience.
The remaining 3 bouts, all scheduled for 4 rounds sees 6 novices in action with just a solitary bout between them. The one man with a fight to his name is Chan Sin Man (1-0) who will be facing Alvin Cooney (0-0), the other two, all debutant bouts are Nibesh Ghale v Kuok Kun Ng and Oliver Prevost v Keng Fai Lam. The second of those bouts is the most interesting pitting the Hong Kong based Frenchman Prevost against Macao's Keng Fai Lam in a Heavyweight bout in a bout that has plenty of intrigue though can it deliver?