In recent years we have seen a lot of Japanese fighters being fast-tracked, with fighters like Kazuto Ioka and Naoya Inoue being moved incredibly quickly as prospects. It's not a new thing however, and before the likes of Inoue and Ioka there was plenty of other Japanese hopefuls moved quickly and aggressively. One such fighter was Hideyasu Ishihara (16-4-1, 10), who sadly didn't reach the top of the sport, despite very high expectations on his shoulders.
The then 22 year old Ishihara made his debut in 1998, after a relatively impressed amateur career, and in just his second professional bout he was fighting in 10 rounders, with his team expecting him to be able to be raced at an incredible pace. Sadly however he had a number of early stumbles, losing 2 of his first 6 bouts, before rebuilding winning the OPBF Super Flyweight title in 2002 and later getting two shots at the WBA Super Flyweight title.
For those who don't know much about Ishihara we thought he'd be a great subject to look at this week, in the latest 5 Midweek Facts article, as we bring you some facts about Hideyasu Ishihara.
1-In his professional debut Ishihara defeated the then Japanese Flyweight champion Nolito Cabato. Cabato, a Japanese based Filipino fighter, had had over 50 professional bouts and had notable wins over future world champions Masamori Tokuyama and Celes Kobayashi, as well as former world champion Manny Melchor. The victory for Ishihara resulted in him getting a world ranking after his debut.
2-He was so highly thought of when he turned professional that not only did he get matched with Cabato on debut but he would then challenge for the Japanese Flyweight title in just his third professional bout! Sadly Ishihara's ambitions were too big at the time, and he would be stopped by Celes Kobayashi in the 7th round of their 10 round contest. Had he won he would have set a record for the fewest fights to win a Japanese title.
3-We often talk about the Korakuen Hall being the home of Japanese boxing, and many notable fighters run up a lot of their bouts at the "Holy Land". That wasn't the case for Ishihara who only fought at Korakuen Hall once in his 21 fight professional career, and never notched a win there. His "home venue", so to speak, was instead the International Conference Hall in Nagoya, where he had 16 of his 21 bouts. In fact only two of his first 18 bouts wasn't at the International Conference Hall. Rather oddly his final 3 bouts all took place away from the International Conference Hall, a venue he was 14-1-1 in! For those who did the maths his record outside of the International Conference Hall was 2-3. On a similar note he never scored a single win outside of Nagoya!
4-Ishihara shares his name with someone involved in the video game industry. We're not totally sure which company "that" Hideyasu Ishihara works for but he's been involved in arts and graphics for things like Sonic Generations, Sonic Unleashed and Dead of Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball, as well as receiving a special thanks in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
5-After his career he became a high school teacher and began working at the Chukyo High School, as a social studies teacher . He would later become the head of the school's boxing club and train none other than Kosei Tanaka and Kento Hatanaka, who he now trains as a professional.
Thinking Out East
With this site being pretty successful so far we've decided to open up about our own views and start what could be considered effectively an editorial style opinion column dubbed "Thinking Out East" (T.O.E).