For the second time inside a week we see the Japanese boxing world turn it's attention to the A class tournament as we get "Dangan 87" an 8 fight show with 3 bouts from various tournaments.
As far as we are aware the sole A class tournament bout will see Yosuke Fujihara (14-1, 4) fighting against Yuta Nakagawa (10-4-1, 6) in the Bantamweight division. For Fujihara this is a chance to build on a victory over Kenji Kubo though for Nakagawa, who has won just 1 of his last 4, he'll know he needs a result to stay relevant. This is one of those oddly wonderful match ups where a loss for either man really will hurt their career, at least for the foreseeable future.
There was originally a second A class tournament bout as Katsunori Nagamine (9-0, 6) was set to fight Yota Hori (9-2-2, 6) in a Flyweight bout. Unfortunately this bout has since been cancelled.
As well as the remaining A class tournament bout we have two other bouts scheduled for 6. One of those will see Ryoichi Tamura (0-1) taking on Keigo Soma (5-8-1, 2) as Tamura searches for his first victory, whilst the the other will see Takuya Fujii (5-4, 1) fighting Kazuki Kobayashi (4-5) in a bout between two men with very similar records.
As well as the three bouts scheduled for 6 rounds we also have a quintet of bouts scheduled for just 4 rounds.
These bouts, and the show it's self, kicks off with an all debutant contest between Takehiro Kojima (0-0) and Nunotani Masashi (0-0). These two men are the only debutants on the card.
Following the all debutant contest we then get two more non-tournament bouts. These will see Kotaro Sasa (1-2) fighting Yuya Nagayoshi (2-5, 1) and Yudai Hata (1-1) fighting Ryota Harukawa (1-1). Neither of these bouts look great on paper but both should be competitive.
As well as the A class tournament there are also two bouts from a C class tournament. The first of these, to take place at Super Flyweight will see Kazuto Nakane (1-0, 1) fighting Kazuma Ishikura (1-1), this will be followed immediately by the second C class tournament bout which will be at Super Featherweight. In the Super Featherweight clash Tateo Saito (2-0) will fight Yutaka Ekawa (1-2-1) in what will be the final 4 round bout before we move on to the 6 round contests.
As well the show in Japan there is also a show in Yemen. It may come as no surprise at all that the headline fight here will be unbeaten KO machine Ali Raymi (18-0, 18) who seeks his 19th straight opening round stoppage. Raymi, seeking to tie a world record, will face the unbeaten Ali Salem (10-0, 2). If Raymi stops Salem inside a round he will tie the 19 opening round stoppages recorded by Tyrone Brunson between 2005 and 2008.
Alongside the Raymi/Salem bout will be a Cruiserweight contest between Faisal Fittini (3-0, 3) and Khaled Abdusalam (1-0). We expect this to last a bit longer than the Raymi fight, though maybe not get the headlines of the main event.
The weekend is of course the busiest time for boxing in both Europe and the US. Unfortunately neither Europe or the US have any genuinely massive fights this weekend and in fact you'd be hard pushed to find a better card than the one at the Korakuen Hall this Saturday.
The show, a Japanese title double header sees 6 bouts in total on the card.
The opening bout, scheduled for 4 rounds sees Suzuki Kenta (0-0) facing Yushan Masaya (0-0) in an all debutant match up in the Welterweight divsion. It appears that the card was supposed to open with a bout between Takahiko Suzuki (1-0, 1) and the debuting Yokoyama Wataru (0-0) though that now looks to have been cancelled and Kenta/Masaya has replaced it in regards to being the shows opener.
The first of 3 bouts scheduled for 8 rounds sees Yuji Hasegawa (7-2, 1) taking on veteran Dosanko Fighter Hayasaka (7-9-2, 1). Unfortunately Hayasaka comes in to the bout on the back of 5 losses and is winless in over 4 years whilst Hasegawa is on a 3 fight winning streak.
The second of the cards 8 round contests sees Yota Hori (9-1-2, 6), a fighter who held Koki Eto to a 6 round draw, taking on Filipono Ardin Diale (20-8-3, 7). Diale, a former world title challenger, looks to be the toughest challenger that Hori has faced so far and is capable of scoring the upset if he's on his game.
The final 8 round contest sees Shuji Hamada (12-5-3, 2), the #12 ranked Japanese Super Flyweight, fighting Masafumi Otake (14-10-3, 7). Hamada has had a good year with 2 straight victories following a trio of setbacks in 2011-2012 and shouldn't struggle too much with Otake despite the fact Otake is unbeaten in 4 bouts.
The first of the two Japanese title fights sees the hard hitting Tomohiro Ebisu (11-2, 11) defending his Japanese Middleweight title. Ebisu will be making the first defense of his title as he takes on former Welterweight and Light Middleweight champion Daisuke Nakagawa (21-3-2, 16), who is currently the #1 ranked contender. Although both of Ebisu's losses have come by stoppage he does hit hard and often comes out on top in a shoot out, as he did last time against the then champion Sanosuke Sasaki.
The final bout on the show sees Japanese Super Featherweight champion Daiki Kaneko (18-2-3, 11) defending his belt for the fourth time. Kaneko will be facing #11 ranked Mitsuya Omura (16-7-1, 12). This will be Omura's second attempt to claim a Japanese national title after being stopped in in a Lightweight title tilt by Nihito Arakawa.
Both of the champions will be expected to claim victory here though there is a chance that they could both be upset in what promises to be a great card from start to end.
The day's "secondary" card takes place at the Flash Grand Ballroom of the Elorde Sports Complex in Paranaque City Gabriel Elorde and the Elorde promotional outfit put on a 6 bout show. Unfortunately none of these bouts hold too much interest.
The main event, scheduled for 10 rounds, sees Cris Alfante (8-1, 2) taking on journeyman Roy Albaera (2-19-4). This is as much of a mismatch as it appears on paper with Albaera having been stopped 14 times in his 25 contests to date.
Unfortunately the shows other bouts look equally as uninteresting with Zoren Pama (3-7-3, 1) taking on Rolando Niones (4-13-2, 2); Rolden Aldea (2-1-1, 1) facing Marco Niones (3-8, 1) and Joathan Ligas (4-5-1) taking on Elbert Guardario (8-21-1, 2) in the shows 3 contests scheduled for 8 rounds.
Arguably the most competitive bout on the show is the sole 6 round contest which sees Vergel Rivera (2-0-1) fighting Raymond Empic (2-1, 1). The remaining contest on the show is a 4 round bout as Arnold Garcia (0-1) takes on debutant Ken Heart Paliprin (0-0)