One of the first men to get us really excited about the "new wave" of Japanese prospects was Yohei Tobe (13-3-1, 9), who made his professional debut in 2011 and really impressed us almost from the off. Even in his debut he looked like a special talent, even if it only 70 seconds, and through his first 4 bouts he was genuinely impressing every time he stepped in the ring.
Sadly Tobe's career never ended up panning out quite like we'd hoped. He suffered early career set backs to Ryo Akaho and Richard Pumicpic and struggled really find his groove. He did manage to put together some glimpses of brilliance, stopping Taiki Eto to win the Japanese title, and blasting out Luzuko Siyo to claim the WBA International title, but the once touted Super Flyweight could never quite put together the performances he needed to become a star.
There was always talent, but Tobe was plagued by injuries and inactivity and his career, which promised so much, failed to deliver, with him fighting for the final time in 2018. Today we're not here to talk about what could have been, and maybe what should have been, instead look to shine a light on Tobe as we bring you 5 Mid Week Facts about Yohei Tobe.
1-Tobe went to the Kamogawa Reitoku High School, a private high school in Komogawa City. Among others who have gone to the school are manga artist Shizue Takanashi and actor Sousuke Takaoka. The school has also been used for a number of Japanese music videos, including one from the hugely popular AKB48.
2-As an amateur Tobe ran up a very solid record scoring more than 40 wins and suffering just 10 losses. In the unpaid ranks he won a number of tournaments, including being a 2-time champion at the National Athletic Meet. He also came third in the All Japan Amateur Championships and when he turned professional there was real expectation on his shoulders.
3-For his 2014 defenses against Sho Ishida, Tobe had to wait around an hour for the weigh in as Ishida was stuck in traffic. The traffic was unexpected and had been caused due to the issues of Typhoon Halong, which was causing all sorts of issues at the time.
4-Early on in his career Tobe was dubbed the "Golden Rookie", due to how much of an advanced talent he was and how highly regarded he as a professional prospect. It's worth noting that due to his potential he was moved incredibly quickly as a result he debuted against the Korean champion, Jin Ki Jung, and took on former world title challengers in his second and third bout, with the third of those being Koehi Kono who would later become a 2-time world champion.
5-After retiring from boxing, which Tobe did at the end of 2018, he became a civil servant working at the Kamogawa City Hall.
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).