Less than a week after the controversial Kameda card on Wednesday world title action returns to Japan for a genuinely excellent card held at the massive Ryōgoku Kokugikan in Tokyo. The card, a joint venture between Teiken and Misako with Ohashi also having something to do with it looks like potentially being one of the best cards of the year.
The main event is likely to be a FOTY candidate as WBC Flyweight champion Akira Yaegashi (18-3, 9) defends his belt for the second time. Yaegashi will be fighting former WBC Light Flyweight champion Edgar Sosa (49-7, 29) who is the mandatory challenger and likely to be one of the toughest fights in Yaegashi's career. For us this fight not only has FOTY (Fight of the Year) possibilities but could also help Sosa, if he wins, become the 2013 Fighter of the Year. Genuine major bout and one that should get every boxing fan excited.
Although the Yaegashi/Sosa bout is the headlined contest it's fair to say that the biggest draw on the card will be Olympic champion Ryota Murata (1-0, 1) who returns to the ring for his second professional bout. The Japanese fighter will be facing once beaten American Dave Peterson (13-1, 8) in an 8 rounder as the chief support contest. We're expecting Murata to be given a better test here than he had against Akio Shibata on his debut though we've got to admit we don't know that much about Peterson.
Amazingly Murata's bout comes after two OPBF title fights. The first of these will see the hard hitting Hiroki Shiino (10-2, 9) attempting to defend his Bantamweight title against the highly talented Ryosuke Iwasa (15-1, 9). Iwasa, who's only loss has come to Shinsuke Yamanaka, will know all about Shiino's power though he will also know that Shiino himself can be hurt. With that in mind we expect a cautious fight from Iwasa and an aggressive one from Shiino. The only thing w don't expect is for this to go the scheduled 12 rounds.
The second of the OPBF title fights will see Japanese super-prospect Naoya Inoue (4-0, 3) attempting to claim the vacant Light Flyweight as he fights Filipino visitor Jerson Mancio (18-3-3, 9). Inoue is expected to beat Mancio who came up short in his 2 previous visits to Japan, losing to Ryo Miyazaki and Junichi Ebisuoka, but we do think this will be a challenge for the Japanese wonder-kid.
Talking about Japanese wonder-kids Naoya's younger brother Takuma Inoue (0-0) will be making his debut on this card as he takes on Tatsuya Fukuhara (12-3-3, 3). Fukuhara, ranked by the JBC in the Minimumweight division should be a good test for Takuma Inoue, though the younger of the two Inoue brothers is expected by many to be every bit as good as Naoya and should come through this test with a victory.
As well as the 5 major bouts mentioned about we're also aware the show will feature 2 “preliminary” contests. Unfortunately we're not 100% certain who will be in those bouts.
This card, at least parts of it, will be shown in Mexico by Azteca on December 7th and will be shown in Japan by Fuji TV on December 6th.
As well as the Japanese card there is a second world title fight involving an Asian, albeit in Australia. This contest, put on by Dragon Fire Promotions, will see Indonesian great Chris John (48-0-3, 22) defending his WBA Featherweight “super” title against South Africa's very talented Simpiwe Vetyeka (25-2, 15). This bout promises to be a very tough one for John who's reign as champion is serious threat from a man who has already beaten a top Indonesian this year a stoppage of Daud Cino Yordan.
Talking about Daud Cino Yordan (31-3-0-1, 23) he himself will be on the show as he attempts to defend his IBO Lightweight title. Yordan will be looking to make the first defense of his title as he takes on South Africa's Sipho Taliwe (24-3-1, 14). Taliwe isn't nearly as good as Vetyeka though he is naturally bigger and could give Yordan a really hard contest here. Yordan will be favoured though if you ask us this is another very competitive contest between a South African and an Indonesian.
The card features a third title as Filipino Ryan Sermona (15-4, 8) fights Matt Garlett (11-1, 6) for the WBC International Super Featherweight title. Sermona was beaten in his last “International” title fight, being stopped by Viorel Simion, but Garlett is at a much lower talent level than Simion and this could prove to be very interesting.
The rest of the Asian interest on this card will see Indonesia's Rasmanudin (17-4-2, 9) fighting Filipino Roberto Lerio (16-17-1, 6) in what looks like a 1-sided contest.
This card, or at least parts of it, will be streamed live on RCTI (Official and legal stream here RCTI).
Over in Russia we expect a small card. The bouts listed here here Konstantin Piternov (14-4, 5) against Sergey Beloshapkin (10-8-1, 3) in an under-card contest before the unbeaten Igor Ivanov (7-0, 2) fights Alexey Tukhtarov (3-1-2, 3) in a contest for the Russian Lightweight title.
Staying on the theme of Russian's, we're also expecting to see action from Rustam Nugaev (25-6-1, 15) who will battle Ira Terry (26-11, 16). With 4 stoppages already this year Nugaev will like be in a destructive mode again here and Terry has already been stopped 7 times. Don't be shocked if this one doesn't go the scheduled 10 rounds.
As well those bouts we are also expecting a fight in Thailand. The Thai show, which will be shown on Thai Channel 7, is one of which we're totally unsure about in regards to who will be fighting, sadly, though we do assume it will feature a PABA title of some sort.
This coming Sunday looks like one of the busiest days of the year, at least in Japan with 3 cards. As well as the trio of shows in Japan there is also a solid looking show in the Phillippines and a card in Yemen.
First lets start with at the most notable card of the day. Which will be held at the IMP Hall in Osaka.
The shows main event sees Japanese Middleweight contender Nobuhiro Ishida (24-9-2, 9) returning to Japan for the first time since 2009. Ishida will be facing Indonesian novice Elly Pangaribuan (3-2, 1) in what appears to be little more than an easy fight after a ridiculously difficult run for Ishida at the world level. Having lost his last 3 contest few can begrudge Ishida an easy night.
As well as Ishida the card also features 5 other bouts. The show kicks off with Yuki Nagashima (1-0) taking on the 18 year old Kei Fujita (3-0, 1). Fujita, also known as Kaoru Fujita, will be hunting his 4th win in a little over 14 months whilst Nagashima will be hoping to build on his successful debut from 4 months ago.
In a Light Middleweight class Ryo Okayama (7-1, 4) looks for his first win of the year as he takes on Indonesian Rocky Irawan Sikumbang (1-0, 1). In all honesty it'd be a shock if Okayama lost here.
We think the 3rd bout on the show will see Takayuki Okumoto (9-5-2, 5) taking on Haruki Toyama (8-2-1, 3) at a catchweight just below 117lbs. This will, if we're right of course, see Okumoto jumping up almost 2 division from his last contest though he has campaigned at Super Flyweight in the past.
Also on the card will be an evenly matched bout between Takaya Kakutani (6-2, 5) against Kazuya Murata (6-4, 2) at the Lightweight limit. Whilst the chief support will see Yu Kawaguchi (19-5, 9) taking on the relatively limited Ryoji Okahata (8-8-5, 1). This should be little more than public sparring session for the #3 ranked Japanese Bantamweight.
Rather confusingly there are two cards on the same day at the IMP Hall. The one mentioned above is promoted by Gurintsuda. The card above is actually the second card of the day at the venue with Dapeng putting on their own show earlier in the day.
The Dapeng card is an 8 bout show that is headlined by the always fun to watch Masao Nakamura (15-1, 15). Nakamura will be facing Filipino Ryan Sermona (15-4, 8) in what could be a very explosive encounter for as long as it lasts.
The chief support bout sees the Japanese #11 ranked Flyweight Akiyoshi Kanazawa (9-2-3, 4) taking on Koji Itagaki (12-7-2, 5). Itagaki comes in to the bout with just 1 win in his last 7 and really shouldn't be able to defeat Kanazawa at this stage in his career.
The remaining 6 bouts on the card are all scheduled for 4 rounds. They open up with Takahiro Morishita (0-1-1) taking on Kaminoko Okamura Kentkid (0-0-1) in a rematch of both men's debut earlier this year. This will be followed by Takuya Fujioka (2-2, 1) facing Noboru Osato (1-0-1, 1).
We think the third bout on the card will see two debutants in action and the fourth bout will be Kazumasa Harunaga (1-1), returning from 2 year break, to take on Kotaro Shinya (2-5-1, 2).
The remaining bouts on the show will be Kyohei Okutani (2-0, 2) against Fumiya Imafuji (1-0-1) and Yosuke Goto (0-2) fighting Takuma Hayashi (1-0, 1).
The third card in Japan takes place at the Kariya Aioi Hall and is the "Rookie of the Year" final. The show is scheduled to have 9 contests taking place between Flyweight and Welterweight.
At Flyweight we will see Yukiya Hanabusa (2-0-1) taking on a fighter whom we believe will be Hiroshi Tanase (2-1). At Super Flyweight Kenta Hashimoto (4-4-1, 2) faces Atsushi Komatsu (3-7-1, 2).
In the Bantamweight division Masato Oike (2-0-1) will face Hikaru Ando (5-3, 3) in what looks to be a competitive match up. At Super Bantamweight Masami Moriizumi (4-0-1, 4), the man who held Masato Oike to a draw, will be in action against, who we assume will be Tokunori Hoshiyama (4-1-1).
At Featherweight Kosuke Mizuno (4-3-1, 2) will fight Keisuke Odorise (3-4-1) in what again looks like a competitive match up and up 4lbs at Super Featherweight Yusuke Nakagawa (4-2-1, 3) will face the hard hitting Shohei Fujimoto (5-2-3, 5) oddly enough in a rematch of a bout from last year.
The Lightweight bout sees Ryo Shirakawa (5-4-2, 2) in action though unfortunately we're struggling to hunt his opponent down.
At Light Weltwerweight we believe Tetsuya Yamaguchi (1-0, 1) will be facing Tatsuo Kurebayashi (3-0, 2) in a very promising match up. There will also be a contest at Welterweight though we're unsure on who will be competing in it.
The card in the Philippines kicks off with Minimumweight action as Miko Sacro (1-0) takes on the debuting Rolly Sumalpong (0-0) and Renerio Arizala (5-0-1, 3) faces Ranel Del Castillo (4-4-2, 2). Both of these bouts are scheduled for 4 rounds.
In a 6 round contest Menard Abila (3-0, 1) faces the unbeaten Felipe Cagubcob Jr. (0-0-3).
As well as the undercard the show has a staggering 5 bouts scheduled for 10 rounds.
These bouts see the promising Michael Dasmarinas (12-1, 8) taking on Pit Anacaya (8-20-2, 1) in Super Flyweight bout that is heavily in favour of Dasmarinas.
The unbeaten JR Magboo (11-0-2, 5) is also in action as he takes on Bryan Macamay (7-1-2, 5) in a very promising match up. The prospects on the card also include Oliver Gregorio (8-1-1, 5) who takes on Ruther del Castillo (9-19-8, 2), and Jetro Pabustan (20-1-5, 6) who faces Boy Dondee Pumar (9-4-3, 3).
The main even on the card sees Roberto Gonzalez (21-2, 12) taking on the experienced Roselito Campana (18-16-3, 5) in what we imagine will be nothing more than an easy victory for Gonzalez.
Yemen card in Yemen, taking place at the Yemen Boxing Federation Gym is expected to have 7 bouts on the show, all of which are scheduled for 10 rounds.
At Middleweight unbeaten's collide as Khaldun Salami (2-0, 1) takes on Yaser Ali (2-0, 2). This is one of two all-unbeaten contests witht eh other seeing Othman Qasim (3-0) meeting Ali Salem (3-0, 1), in what is probably the bout of the card.
The remaining 5 bouts feature one unbeaten fighter against a fighter with at least one loss.
At Minimumweight Asam Dolbhante (3-0) looks for his third victory inside a month as he takes on Omar Al Khatib (0-1). Interestingly this is one of 3 bouts at the 105lb division with Mustafa Humaidi (5-0, 2), looking for his fourth victory of the month, takes on Ali Al Ahdal (3-2, 2) and Wesam Maqrami (3-0, 2) battles Mawj Abdulrezak (2-3).
In the Super Flyweight division Luke Hasan (1-0) looks for his second victory inside a month as he faces Bahr Slyman (1-1). The reamining bout takes place at Light Welterweight with Abdu Sameer (2-0) taking on Mohammad Saleh (2-1).