The early highlight of the week is with out a doubt in Japan on Wednesday as the Kameda Bros. put on an excellent show featuring 3 world title bouts in Osaka.
The show's trio of headline bouts begins with Katsunari Takayama (25-6-0-1, 10) defending his IBF Minimumweight title for the first time. The champion, fighting in Japan for the first time in over 4 years, will be taking on Filipino challenger Vergilio Silvano (17-2-1, 10) who will be putting up a 17 fight unbeaten streak. We've got to admit that this has "war" written all over it.
Interestingly a story coming from several sources is that if Takayama retains he will be travelling to China in April to unify with WBC champion Xiong Zhao Zhong, who retained his title on Saturday. A Takayama/Zhong fight would be a certified war and something we'd certainly love to see. We're not sure if Silvano, if he wins, will also be considering this possibility but we're fans of unification so we'd hope so.
The second of the main fights here will see Tomoki Kameda (28-0, 18), the first ever Japanese fighter to win a WBO world title, defending his WBO Bantamweight title for the first time. Tomoki will be facing fellow unbeaten fighter Immanuel Naidjala (17-0-1, 11) of Namibia. Although Naidjala is unbeaten he was tested in a big way by Botswana's Lesley Sekotswe and we can't help but think that Tomoki will make this look very easy.
There are calls for Tomoki, if he wins, to face fellow Japanese champion Shinsuke Yamanaka. Although it's unlikely that Tomoki will want that fight it's certainly a fight that fans are calling for and one that needs making if Tomoki is to be accepted as a genuine world champion by many.
The final of the three major bouts sees Daiki Kameda (29-3, 18) attempting to unify his IBF Super Flyweight title with the WBA title as he fights Liborio Solis (15-3-1, 7) in what looks like a fantastic match up. Unfortunately however Solis was unable to make weight has been stripped has been stripped of the WBA belt, thankfully however Daiki can still unify the titles.
Interestingly this past weekend saw Zolani Tete stopping Juan Carlos Sanchez in 10 rounds. This has seen Tete instilled as the mandatory for the IBF title held by Daiki.
This same card will feature 4 other contests. The first of these will see Hiroshi Takagi (1-2) fighting against Hiroya Kojima (2-0, 2) in a Super Flyweight bout. This will be joined by a female bout which involves Honey Mae Bermoy (5-2, 5) fighting a Thai opponent.
This show also features two other bouts which are listed as preliminary contests, unfortunately we're not sure who will be in them.
As well as the Kameda show there is a second Japanese show. On this show,which is promoted by Hanagata Gym, the main event will see Saemi Hanagata (8-4-1, 3) fighting Yuko Kuroki (9-4, 5) for the OPBF Minimumweight title.
As well as the main event this show will feature 7 other contests. Of those 7 bouts 5 are scheduled for 4 rounds.
The other two bouts are both scheduled for 6 rounds. These will see Ryo Shirakawa (5-5-2, 2) fighting against Kazuki Matsuyama (6-5, 3), who has lost his last 3 bouts, and Tetsuya Koyama (5-4, 2) fighting against Takahiro Shibata (4-2-1, 1), who will be hoping to not suffer a third successive opening round KO loss.
It's rare to have genuine world title bouts on a Thursday but this week we have 2 seperate ones.
In the Philippines WBO Bantamweight champion Paulus Ambunda (20-0, 10) takes on Japanese challenger Tomoki Kameda (27-0, 18). Tomoki, the younger brother of Koki and Daiki will attempt to become the 3rd member of the Kameda family to claim a world title though Namibian Ambunda will be no push over.
Ambunda won his world title earlier this year defeating Pungluang Sor Singyu of Thailand by decision in an excellent, if somewhat ignored, contest. Using that fight as a basis for what we know about Ambunda it's clear this is going to be a tough fight for Tomoki. Oddly however if Tomoki does win he'll become the first ever Japanese WBO world champion and he'll join older brother Koki as a current Bantamweight champion.
On the same card in the Philippines there's a second Bantamweight title bout as Marlon Tapales (22-2, 9) takes on Fredirex Rodriguez (11-2-1, 8) for the WBO Asia Pacific Bantamweight title. Ranked #14 by the WBO Rodriguez will be looking to leap up the rankings with the victory here and possibly even move in to a position to face the Tomoki/Ambunda winner.
Also on the card is former WBC and "Linear" Flyweight champion Sonny Boy Jaro (34-12-5, 24) who will fight Gerpaul Valero (14-14-3, 10). Although Valero has a poor record he has impressively won 13 of his last 14 contests with his sole loss being to Jerson Mancio in Mancio's home city.
The card fills out with 3 lower level bouts that see Ardie Boyosi (6-0-1, 3) taking on Al Grumo (7-6, 1), Neil John Tabanao (3-0, 2) fighting Charlie Pucdol (4-1, 3) and Joey Canoy (2-0, 1) facing Marwin Cristota (2-8-1, 1).
In Thailand the details on the card are scarce but the main event looks to be an entertaining on as Kompayak Porpramook (50-4, 35) looks to defend his WBA "interim" Flyweight title. Kompayak, best known for his wars with Adrian Hernandez, will be facing Japanese challenger Koki Eto (13-2-1, 10). Eto is a limited fighter but hits hard and Porpramook is of course a balls to the wall warrior so we expect this to be great fun as long as it lasts.