In August we're going to see Ryota Yamauchi and Satoru Todaka battle for the WBO Asia Pacific Flyweight title. Whilst the belt doesn't have a long, established history, being less than 20 years old, it does still have some noteworthy champions over it's short, but notable history. With that in mind, and with the upcoming bout just a few weeks away, we though this week's "Did You Know" should be about the WBO Asia Pacific title!
-The first champion was Nonito Donaire, who won the belt in September 2002, with a KO win against Kaichon Sor Vorapin.
-Donaire's reign ended when he vacated and the second champion was in November 2002. Incidentally that second champion was Nonito's brother Glenn Donaire, making this a rather rare case of two brothers holding a regional title in the space of just a few months.
-The first champion to successfully defend the belt was Rexon Flores, who was the third man to hold the belt. Flores made 2 defenses of the belt, including one against Terdsak Kokietgym.
-Another champion who managed to make a successful defense was future fringe world title contender Drian Francisco. He only made a single defense of the belt.
-The first non-Filipino to win the title was Korean Jin Man Jeon, who beat future world champion Suriyan Sor Rungvisai for the title.
-The first Thai to hold the title was former WBC Minmumweight champion Wandee Singwancha.
-In 2010 Tepparith Kokietgym held the title, defending it once. He would go on to become the second holder of the belt to win a world title, following Nonito Donaire.
-The July 2014 bout between Jing Xiang and Ben Mananquil was the first, and so far only, draw in a bout for the belt.
-The rematch between Jing Xiang and Ben Mananquil, in December 2014, holds a distinction as the only time two men have fought each other twice for the title.
-Iwan Zoda became the first, and so far only, Indonesian to hold the belt when he stopped Petchchorhae Kokietgym in their sensational 2015 12 round war.
-The first Japanese fighter to win the belt was Sho Kimura, he did so in the first all-Japanese bout for the belt, which saw him defeat Masahiro Sakamoto.
-Despite losing to Kimura we did see Sakamoto bounce back to win the belt belt himself the following year, becoming the first man to win win the belt following a loss in a bout for the belt.
-With Masahiro Sakamoto losing in 2019 to Yusuke Sakashita he bacame the first fighter to losing in a bout for the belt after previously holding it, though he was fighring for the vacant title here.
-So far we've had 23 bouts for the title, with a single draw.
-From the 23 bouts 10 have gone the distance
-To date the title has never been lost by a fighter, with all reigns coming when a champion has vacated the title.
-So far the title has been fought for in Guam, where both Donaire's won the title, the Philippines, South Korea, Thailand, China and Japan.
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).