The Won Boxing Stadium, Seoul, South Korea
Over in Korea this coming Sunday we'll see KBM Lightweight champion Moo Hyun Kim (6-1, 2) defending the title he won last November, as he takes on Yun Seong Kim (4-1, 2), who is himself dropping down in weight for this bout.
The talented champion has shown what he can do on the road, beating Hironori Shigeta and George Tachibana earlier on his career, and has also impressed back in Korea. Although a flawed fighter the 28 year old has impressed since suffering his sole loss in 2017 and seems like he has the potential to be a player on the OPBF title scene in the future, if he continues to develop. As for the challenger he was stopped just a couple of fights back, but it's though that, at 135lbs, he'll be stronger and more powerful than he was whilst fighting at Light Welterweight.
As with all Korean bouts we expect this one to be a damn exciting war, with both men letting leather fly and it could end up being the hidden gem of the weekend.
As well as the main event this card will feature 3 under-card bouts, including a 6 rounder and a female 4 rounder. Don't expect the boxing to be high level on the under-card, but the action should make up for that and Korean under-cards almost always deliver great brawls.
We were expecting this Saturday to be a huge one for Asian boxing, though sadly it's not gone ahead without a hiccup. A card planned for Korakuen Hall has been postponed, from May 1st to May 19th, due to the current State of Emergency in Tokyo, and a show planned to take place in Thailand has been postponed to June 5th. Despite that the day is certainly still onw with stuff to talk about.
London, United Kingdom
The biggest bout of the day takes place in London as WBA Light Heavyweight "super" champion Dmitry Bivol (17-0, 11) defends his title against Craig Richards (16-1-1, 9), in what looks like a massive leap up in clash for the British national champion. Bivol, born in Kyrgyzstan though fighting out of Russia, is one of the most talented and proven fighters at 175lbs, but also one of the most frustrating and someone who has gained a reputation for having a lot of skills but an unwillingness to take risks. In Richards we have a man we expect to look very much out of his depth, but put up a game effort in what could be a rather ugly and messy fight. Despite not being the most attractive match up style wise, it is great to see Bivol back in the ring after more than a year of inactivity. Our full preview of this bout can be read here WBA "Super" Champion Bivol faces Richards in the UK!
Urdaneta Cultural Center, Urdaneta City, Dangasinan, Philippines
In the Philippines we're set to get a show that was originally scheduled to take place on April 24th but was then delayed. Sadly despite the delay it is still very much a show of mismatches.
One of the notable fighters on this card is former amateur standout Charly Suarez (5-0, 4), who had been tipped as a future force for Filipino boxing when he turned professional. The now 32 year old Suarez turned professional disappointingly late and now, in his 6th bout, is taking on regional journeyman Pablito Canada (7-18-4, 1), who was replaced Suarez's originally planned opponent of Lorence Rosas (9-5-2, 3). We know that Filipino fighters, like Japanese fighters, are limited right now due to travel issues brought on by covid19 but in reality Canada, even as a late replacement, is a poor choice of opponent, and he shouldn't really force Suarez to break a sweat. Canada has gone 1-7-1 in his last 9 and will almost certainly pick up another loss here to the frustrating but talented Suarez.
In a potentially better match up the under-rated Richard Pumicpic (21-11-2, 6), who is much, much better than his record suggests, will take on Landy Cris Leon (13-21-5, 6). We like Pumicpic, a lot, and his record really doesn't tell the tale of his ability or his career. Coming in Pumicpic has lost his last 3, but we're expecting a very decisive performance here against the very limited Leon.
CWE Academy, Jalandhar, India
There is also set to be a small show in India, though we wouldn't be surprised if this was postponed given what is currently happening in the country.
The planned main event here would see unbeaten men collide, with Pawan Goyat (3-0) and Sachin Nautiyal (4-0, 3) facing off in a 6 rounder in the Light Middleweight division. Goyat made an impressive in 2016, but has been horribly inactive since then, and it's hard to know what his ambitions for the sport are. Nautiya on the other hand is 19 and will be up against his first fighter with a win. Hard to read much into this one, but still it is good to see Indian boxing look up, after some stellar results in recent amateur competitions.
Another unbeaten fighter on this card worthy of some attention is popular female fighter Asha Roka (3-0, 1), who looks for her 4th win in professional boxing as she takes on the win-less Madhu Rani (0-3). Although her boxing career is still in it's infancy Roka does have a growing fanbase, and the potential to be one of the key Indian female professional stars, though does need stiffer competition in the near future. Sadly this is not likely to be a test for her. As for Rani, at least we can say she's active and this will be her 4th professional bout since November 2020. Unfortunately she's lost the previous 3 and will be expected to lose this one as well.
Sanman Gym, General Santos City, Cotabato del Sur, Philippines
To end the month of April we get the next show from Sanman promotions. It's not a huge card, though it's a very notable one, with 3 notable Filipino hopefuls in action, as they all look to tick over and move towards bigger and better things. They are 3 fighters who, after the pandemic, will all be knocking on the door of big fights.
The main event will see world ranked Filipino hopeful Mike Plania (24-1, 12) take on the limited Emmanuel Mogawa (5-3, 2), in what should be little more than a stay busy bout for Plania. The talented "Magic Mike" scored a career best win last June, over Joshua Greer Jr, but was unable to build on that victory and has sadly lost the momentum that that win should have injected into his career. Sadly with the momentum gone it makes sense to tick over with a bout like this, and keep ready than to waste more time. It's just a shame he didn't get a big fight after the win over Greer. As for Mogawa he's never been stopped, and can fight, but should be very under-sized here.
Another man who seemed set for big things last year is Jayson Mama (15-0, 8), who had been lined up for a fight with Moruti Mthalane, before that fell apart due to issues with the promoter. Mama will have to put that missed opportunity behind him, and stay focused as he takes on the rugged Romshane Sarguilla (7-5-2, 4), who is a lot more of a test than his record suggests. The 23 year old Mama is a talented prospect, but someone who serious needs some tests and some seasoning, and this bout should be a good test for him. Sarguilla is limited but has managed to ask serious questions of upcoming world title challenger Pongsaklek Sithdabnij and Andika D'Golden Boy. He will be there to win and should be the type of fighter who brings out the best in Mama.
A third notable hopeful here is Jade Bornea (15-0, 10), who takes on Roland Jay Biendima (15-7-1, 8). Bornea was a standout amateur and is someone with the potential to mix it at a high level, but he has yet to really click in the professional ranks and will need a more complete performance than we've seen from him if he's to convince the sport that he is a world champion in the making. Biendima however has had mixed performances. His 2020 clash with Kento Hatanaka was an amazing war, where he showed real toughness, but he was stopped quickly a bout later, by Christian Araneta. On his day Biendima can be a force, and we hope he manages to put on a good performance here, as Bornea needs to forced into showing what he can really do.
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
We return to Korakuen Hall this coming Tuesday, ending a 6 day run without a show there, as we get the next A-Sign Bee show. This isn't a big card, by any stretch, but does look to be quite an evenly matched one, and that's saying more than we can for some shows.
The main event will see Japanese ranked Super Featherweight fighters clash in a n 8 rounder. In corner is #9 ranked Kazuma Sanpei (19-6, 8) and in the other corner will be Kazuaki Miyamoto (7-5, 6), ranked #19. On paper this doesn't look like an amazing bout, but it should be a very well contested one. Sanpei is a 25 fight veteran who began his career in 2012, and is still only 25. His record looks good at first glance, and a 2013 All Japan Rookie of the Year win also looks good, but he is 8-6 (4) in his last 14 bouts, not that much different to Miyamoto's career record. He has also been stopped in 4 of those 6 losses. Miyamoto on the other hand is a 27 year old glass cannon who has been stopped in all 5 losses, but has the power to be dangerous with only 1 decision win on his record. We expect this one to be explosive!
Another potentially explosive bout will see Ken Koibuchi (6-5, 5) and Katsunori Endo (7-3, 4) clash in another 8 rounder. The 25 year old Koibuchi is limited but tough, having been stopped once in his 5 losses whilst Endo has been stopped in 2 of his 3 defeats. The key however is the power for both men, and this could end up being one where both men are hurt before we see a finish. Interestingly Endo enters the bout ranked #11 by the JBC at Super Featherweight.
Another ranked fighter on this show is Tatsuya Yanagi (17-6-2, 7), who is risking rankings with the JBC, OPBF and the WBO Asia Pacific, as he takes on Toru Kiyota (10-4, 7). Yanagi's record is certainly not the best, but he is 6-1-1 in his last 8 including good wins over Ryusei Nakajima, Koichi Aso and Kazuki Saito. Kiyota on the other hand is 3-3 in his last 6 but has shown a lot to like, and with some luck could well have had 3 of those losses expunged from his record. This might not look great but should be a very interesting bout over the 8 round schedule.
One other bout worthy of note is an all debutant 4 rounder between Italian born Japanese based Boni Federica (0-0) and Asako Sugawara (0-0). Not much is known about either fighter, but Federica was born in Italy and is now fighting out of the RK Kamata Gym, with her goal being to win a Japanese title. Sugawara on the other hand is from the Ichiriki Gym and has reportedly set a target of winning a world title. Not a great bout, but certainly an interesting one.
NOTE - There is talk that this show may be postponed due to the recent state of emergency in Tokyo If you are attending the event please check with the promoter (Ichiriki)
April 24th - World and Regional title fights in Japan, world title eliminator in South Africa and more!
This coming Saturday is set to be a hectic day, with two notable Japanese shows, a world title eliminator in South Africa and a show in the Philippines featuring several noteworthy fighters.
EDION Arena Osaka, Osaka, Osaka, Japan
The most notable card comes from Osaka and is a lovely mix of everything Japanese boxing has to offer. It has a world title bout in the main event, a brilliant domestic bout in the co-feature role and several talented prospects in tough bouts through the card.
The main event will see WBC Light Flyweight champion Kenshiro Teraji (17-0, 10) look to record his latest defense as he faces Japanese veteran Tetsuya Hisada (34-10-2, 20), in a bout that has a surprising amount of history behind it. The two men were originally scheduled to fight in 2017, before Kenshiro vacated the Japanese title and went on to fight for the WBC belt. They were also scheduled to fight in 2020, before legal issues scuppered the bout. Of the two men Kenshiro is the more well known and the more proven, with this being his 8th defense, but the highly experienced Hisada is a very capable fighter, who gave Hiroto Kyoguchi a tough test in 2019 and will know that this is his last chance at a world title. We expect this one to be a brilliant bout between a strong, aggressive, veteran and a talented and intelligent champion. A genuinely fantastic match up. Our in depth preview of this can be read here 4 years in the making - Kenshiro Teraji Vs Tetsuya Hisada
The co-feature for this show will see talented teenage hopeful Ayumu Hanada (5-0, 4) take on the huge punching Mammoth Kazunori (6-3-1, 6) in a 6 round bout between the Flyweight and Super Flyweight limits. Hanada began his career in Mexico before moving back to Japan last year and he made his JBC debut late last year in a very impressive performance. He's very young, but lives up to the "Flaco" nickname, with an aggressive, exciting and explosive style. Talking about explosive however Kazunori is one of the heaviest handed fighters in Japan, and if he catches an opponent clean he can wipe some one out. This is a very dangerous bout for Hanada, but a win here will likely lead him to a potential bout with a Japanese ranked opponent next time out.
Another prospect on this card is Kantaro Juri (2-0, 1), who looks to score his third win as he takes on the light punching Toma Kondo (8-6-1, 1). The 24 year old Juri is a talented southpaw, who has a lot of promise and showed a lot of ability as an amateur, but is yet to show what he can really do as a professional. Fingers crossed we see him put together a better performance here than we've seen from him so far. Kondo is no world beater, but he is much better than his record suggests and 4 of his 6 losses have been by split decision. He's coming in to this on the back of a minor high, as he he surprisingly held Yuki Nakajima to a draw in December, and will feel like he can build on that result here.
One other bout that deserves a bit of attention is a match up between Daiki Asai (0-1) and Yu Konomura (10-9-2, 4). Asai lost his debut, last year, to Kyonosuke Kameda, but showed a lot as an amateur and clearly has some tools in his arsenal that could see him in some interesting bouts over the next few years. Konomura is a win some-lose some, type of fighter, but has began to find his self belief and power, scoring his last 3 wins by stoppage, and we suspect he'll come in to this confident that he can get another KO. Both of these guys are better than their records suggest, and they could end up giving a genuine treat deep on the under-card of this show.
Convention Center, Ginowan, Okinawa, Japan
A second Japanese card, which will be aired live in Okinawa and be shown on tape delay in Tokyo, will be a card that has a very easy to over-look main event, and a solid prospect on the under-card. It's not as interesting, or as big as the Osaka card, but is a show worthy of attention.
The main event here will see former WBC Flyweight champion Daigo Higa (17-1-1, 17) look to score his first defense of the WBO Asia Pacific Bantamweight title, as he takes on the unbeaten Ryosuke Nishida (3-0, 1). Higa won the title in impressive fashion last December, when he stopped Yuki Strong Kobayashi, but hasn't looked the most convincing since his forced move to Bantamweight. He is certainly heavy handed and very exciting, but we do wonder whether he has the natural size to compete against the better fighters in the division. For Nishida this is a massive step up, but he has impressed since turning professional, and he looked a real talent last time out, when he beat Shohei Omori. He has the style and size to neutralise Higa, and if he can put a complete performance together here he could upset the local hero. Our in depth preview of this one can be read here Higa returns to Okinawa to take on unheralded Nishida!
Higa's once beaten stablemate Ryuto Owan (6-1, 4) will also be on this show, as he takes on the tough and rugged Takafumi Iwaya (4-4). Owan won his first 5 bouts before losing in 2018, in a Japanese Youth title bout. Following that loss he disappeared for a couple of years before returning last year with a win over Tomoya Kishine and he looked really good in that win. Iwaya isn't a particularly well known fighter, but he is insanely tough and last year we saw him take a battering at the hands of the brilliant Rentaro Kimura, before finally being stopped in round 5. He's very limited but there is no doubting his toughness and he will be a potential nightmare for Owan here. Owan should have the tools to win, but he will have to work hard against one of the toughest men in the sport.
Suamlum Night Bazaar, Ratchadaphisek, Bangkok
Over in Thailand we get the next show from TL Promotions and it's one with a very peculiar main event.
That main event will see former Welterweight contender Teerachai Sithmorseng (44-1, 31) clash with former Bantamweight and Super Featherweight champion Sirimongkhon Iamthuam (97-5, 62), with the bout taking place all the way up at Light Heavyweight. The bout will be for Teerachai's WBA Asia title and it's fair to say that neither man will look in their best physical shape and condition.
The show will also feature the third professional boxing contest of Nonthasith Petchnamthong (2-0) who will be defending his WBA Asia Bantamweight title , as he takes on Suradech Ruhasiri (6-2, 5). Nonthasith is a top Muay Thai fighter who has been solid since turning to professional, and should be far, far too good for his Thai foe here. Though sadly Nonthasith has shown little power in professional boxing gloves, and it's going to be interesting to see whether or not he can stop his limited foe here.
2nd Floor, Mega Mart Burgos Poblacion Norte, Paniqui, Tarlac, Philippines
In the Philippines we're set to get a show that is rather disappointing overall, but one that does feature several fighters of note. Sadly however as with many Filipino shows it has the look of "mismatch city".
One of the notable fighters on this card is former amateur standout Charly Suarez (5-0, 4), who had been tipped as a future force for Filipino boxing when he turned professional. The now 32 year old Suarez turned professional disappointingly late and now, in his 6th bout, is taking on regional journeyman Lorence Rosas (9-5-2, 3). We know that Filipino fighters, like Japanese fighters, are limited right now due to travel issues brought on by covid19 but in reality Rosas is a poor choice of opponent, and he shouldn't really force Suarez to break a sweat. Rosas has lost his last 4, last fought in 2019, as a Super Bantamweight, and offers very little to test Suarez with.
In a potentially better match up the under-rated Richard Pumicpic (21-11-2, 6), who is much, much better than his record suggests, will take on Landy Cris Leon (13-21-5, 6). Although Pumicpic's record is underwhelming he's a real nightmare to fight and has given the likes of Ryosuke Iwasa, Cesar Juarez and Musashi Mori fits. He record might not show it, but he is a legitimate handful at the Oriental title level and shouldn't be over-looked, even with 11 losses to his name. Leon on the other hand has gone from once being a decent regional journeyman to a man who has started to collect losses bout after bout after bout. This should be an easy win for Pumicpic, but given he's lost his last 3 we won't complain too much. He deserves an easy one if we're being honest.
Gqeberha, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Outside of Japan the most significant bout of the day comes from South Africa, where once beaten Filipino Christian Araneta (19-1, 15) takes on hard hitting South African prospect Sivenathi Nontshinga (9-0, 9), in what is an IBF world title eliminator at 108lbs. The talented Araneta suffered his only loss in 2019, when an arm injury forced him to retire against Daniel Valladares, in what was a fantastic though disappointingly short bout. Since that loss he has notched 2 domestic wins and appears hungry to make a statement. Nontshinga on the other hand is somewhat unknown outside of South Africa but has got notable wins over Siyabonga Siyo and Ivan Soriano. Interestingly he did go 7 rounds before stopping Muhsin Kizota in 2018, the same Kizota who looked clueless recently against Hasanboy Dusmatov, and there maybe is some doubt about how good he really is. The winner of this will be right in the mix and may well end up getting a shot at Felix Alvarado later in the year. This is easy to over-look but could be the bout that steals the weekend.
Universum Gym, Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
Over in Germany we'll see unbeaten German based Thai Phannarai Netisri (7-0, 4) fight for a WBC Youth title. Sadly her opponent, at the time of writing, is yet to be announced as her original opponent appears to have been pulled out of the contest due to some nasty injuries suffered in their last bout. "Fai" is a really exciting young fighter at just 20 years old, and it's going to be very interesting to see how she develops from here
GK Ekaterininskiy, Krasnodar, Russia
As well as everything we've already mentioned there is also set to be an appearance from rising Uzbek hopeful Ulugbek Qayumboev (4-0, 4), who will be looking for his 5th straight early win as he takes on a yet to be named opponent. The 20 year old Qayumboev, who fights around the Lightweight division, debuted last year and has been blowing out very low level competition so far. Fingers crossed we see him stepping up later this year, though sadly this bout doesn't seem like to be much of an upgrade given no opponent was named 7 days out.
United States Military Academy, West Point, New York, USA
Over in the US this coming Thursday is the next in Ring City USA shows, and it's a really good one overall, with several really interesting match ups on it, as we're becoming accustomed to with the series. For us however the focus isn't on the main bouts but instead two of the lesser bouts, which feature central Asian hopefuls.
The more notable of the two bouts featuring a Central Asian prospect will see unbeaten Kazakh Welterweight Bobirzhan Mominov (12-0, 8) take on the once beaten Angel Ruiz (16-1, 12) in a very, very good looking 8 rounder. The 29 year old Mominov has been a professional since 2016, but has treat water for a while, with his most notable career achievement being as a sparring partner for Saul "Canelo" Alvarez. Although he's yet to score a break out win there is no doubting his talent, but he does need to prove it. At 23 years old Ruiz is much younger than Mominov, but even less proven and in his last bout, back in October 2019, he was stopped in 2 rounds buy Javier Flores. On paper this is a big step up Ruiz, and it may be too much, too soon, given the lengthy lay off.
The other central Asian fighter on this show is talented Uzbek Hurshidbek Normatov (10-0, 3), who will be looking for his 11th straight win as he takes on Jose Carlos Rivera (8-4-1, 5). The awkward, tall and rangy Normatov is a 29 year old southpaw, who hasn't had much buzz, despite being an unbeaten Uzbek with a strong amateur background and WSB experience, including a win over Anthony Fowler. An exciting performance here could help generate some attention for him, but a win over Rivera by it's self won't mean much. Rivera has been a professional since 2016 and although his record looks poor he has been matched hard and has been working as a good test for prospects. He will however need a career best performance here if he's to be a real test for the skilled Uzbek.
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
This coming Wednesday our attention turns to Tokyo for a solid card from Yokohama Hikari. The show isn't a massive one, by any stretch, but it has 3 very good bouts on it all of which could have headlined smaller shows.
The main event of the card will see Japanese Light Middleweight champion Hironobu Matsunaga (17-1, 11) look to make his third defense of the title, as he takes on the unbeaten Rei Nakajima (4-0). The talented and aggressive Matsunaga is one of the most fun Japanese fighters to watch in the "middle weight" range, as he's the type of fighter who brings incessant pressure, pushes forward and tries to force his will on his opponents. That has worked well for him over the last 5 years and he has won his last 11, against some pretty well established fighters on the Japanese scene. The challenger however is the exact opposite. Nakajima is a speed, slippery fighter, who uses good timing, good boxing IQ and quickness to land shots and avoid taking many. Nakajima isn't too well established, but really impressed last time out, beating Shinobu Charlie Hosokawa, and will come into this bout feeling he has the tools to defeat Matsunaga. This could be a very, very interesting bout. Our in depth preview of this bout can be read here Japanese champion Matsunaga clashes with Nakajima
In a second title bout we'll see Japanese Youth Minimumweight champion Kai Ishizawa (7-1, 7) defending his title against Yuni Takada (8-6-2, 3). The exciting and hard hitting Ishizawa won the title way back in 2018, when he stopped Yuga Inoue, but hasn't managed to defend it yet and will have to vacate it later this year, as he's now 24. It seems very clear that he and his team wanted to make at least one defense before handing it back. As for Takada he won't be expected to put up much of a challenge, having gone 2-4-1 in his last 7 and he's winless in his last 3. However Takada has been matched hard, having faced the likes of Norihito Tanaka, Toshiki Kawamitsu and Tetsuya Mimura, and will be there knowing this is a rare title opportunity for him. We suspect Ishizawa will be in here to make a statement and really test the heart and toughness of Takada from the off, before going on to bigger and better things. Our preview of this bout can be read here Ishizawa takes on Takada in Japanese Youth title defense
The third bout of note on this card will see highly skilled Japanese Featherweight Reiya Abe (20-3-1, 9) take on the once beaten Koshin Takeshima (4-1-1, 3). The brilliant Abe has gone 12-1-1 (5) in his last 14 bouts, scoring notable wins against the likes of Tsuyoshi Tameda, Joe Noynay, Satoshi Hosono and Daisuke Watanabe. Although not the most fun fighter to watch there is no doubting his talent, ability and high level boxing IQ. Traits that have seen him dubbed a boxing genius in Japan. Takeshima on the other hand turned professional with quite a bit of buzz around him, and there was high expectations on his shoulders, but he's gone 0-1-1 in his last 2 and has looked underwhelming at times. He's clearly a talented fighter, but he doesn't appear to have developed well since turning professional. Sadly for Takeshima we suspect he will come undone again here, especially given his poor performance last time out, against Yamato Hata.
Amakusa Park Gym, Asakuchi, Okayama, Japan
This coming Sunday isn't set to be a big day in Asian boxing, but it should be an interesting day for fight fans in Okayama thanks to Kurashiki Moriyasu who puts on a show featuring a Japanese champion and interesting looking main support bout.
The champion in question is Japanese Flyweight champion Seigo Yuri Akui (15-2-1, 10) who will be taking part in an 8 round non-title bout, as he takes on Yuto Nakamura (11-6-1, 8) in a Super Flyweight bout. The hard hitting Akui won the Japanese title in 2019 and recorded his first defense last year. Sadly Covid19 restrictions have made it difficult for him to secure a second title defense, and rather than face an over matched challenger he's dipping his toes in a new weight classes, and potentially leaving the door open to becoming a 2-weight Japanese champion in the future.
Whilst the focus here will be on Akui it is worth noting that Nakamura is no push over. In fact the 24 year old from Mie Prefecture is a former Japanese Youth Super Flyweight who has lost just one of his last 5 bouts, and that was a frankly ridiculous match up against Super Bantamweight Ryo Akaho. Nakamura will know that if he wins here he will open the door to a potential title fight of his own at 115lbs and will come into this hungry to make a statement. He will, however, have to be wary about the explosive power of Akui. If he can avoid getting blown out early he might have the size and strength to test the naturally smaller man.
In a solid looking supporting bout we'll see Kenya Okada (5-2-1, 3) take on Sho Omote (8-2, 3) in a 6 rounder. The 25 year old Okada has struggled for momentum, and is 2-2-1 in his last 5, after winning his first 3 bouts. Sadly for him his record is rather padded and he's yet to beat a fighter with a winning record. Omote on the other hand has shown some real promise, and won Rookie of the Year in 2019, beating the then 7-1 Kosuke Ando in the All Japan final. Despite his Rookie of the Year triumph Omote did lose last time out, in a notable upset against Shota Asami in November. On paper it's fair to feel that Omote should be the big favourite, however Okada is the naturally bigger man, and he will be looking to use that advantage here against the talented, but small, Omote.
Alcantara, Cebu, Philippines
As well as the action in Japan we are also looking forward to a show from the Philippines promoted by ARQ promotions, set up by Jason and Eva Mari Arquisola. The show was originally planned for March but delayed due to the ongoing situation.
The full line up hasn't been confirmed at the time of writing, though the main event is known to feature highly skilled Filipino youngster April Jay Abne (5-0, 2) risking his unbeaten record against Royder Lloyd Borbon (6-9-1, 6). On paper this shouldn't be too much of a test for Abne, however having been out for well over a year we're just glad to see Abne back in the ring and restart his journey to through the sport. He really is one of the most talented Filipino fighters out there, and a true joy to watch.
Others on this card will include Ian Abne (1-0, 1), Christopher Caburog (1-0), and Maurino Agum (2-0, 1) in what looks likely to be a showcase of young novices.
Boxing in China really has taken a massive hit in the last 16 months or so, and we really don't need to explain why. There has still be some occasional event here and there, but their number has dropped significantly since 2019. Thankfully we do get something of an interesting Chinese card this coming Saturday as Chengdu plays host to a card featuring a former world title challenger and an interesting match up between two unbeaten hopefuls.
The former world title challenger on this show is former WBO Flyweight title challenger Wulan Tuolehazi (14-4-1, 7), who looks to score his second win since a 2019 loss to Kosei Tanaka. In the opposite corner will be Yinhuan Su (7-5-2, 1). At his best Tuolehazi is a solid Oriental level fighter, who has wins against the likes of Jayr Raquinel, Roland Jay Biendima and Ryota Yamauchi, but we're not sure what hunger and desire he really has, and whether he can get up and motivated for a bout against someone like Su. Su is no world beater. He's lost 4 of his last 5. But he's got enough about him to be a banana skin if Tuolehazi is looking past him, and looking towards a second world title fight.
The most interesting of the supporting bouts here will see Huayun Wang (3-0, 3) battle against Xingqiang Yang (2-0) in a really nice looking match up. Wang is the older man, at 27, and the bigger puncher, taking out his first 3 opponents in just 6 rounds. He is however someone who has only faced debuting fighters and has never seen the end of round 3, leaving lots of questions as to what happens when an opponent doesn't just fold. Yang on the other is 19 years old, he's already had 8 rounds as a professional, and has beaten a fighter with some experience, albeit just 3 fights of experience. This should puncher against boxer, and unbeaten man against unbeaten man.
MCA Arena, Mumbai, India
Another notable card for us comes from the MCA Arena in Mumbai and features two bouts of note.
In the main event former Indian amateur standout Nutlai Lalbiakkima (1-0, 1) will battle fellow professional novice Sandeep Singh (1-0-1) in a bout for the WBA Intercontinental Minimumweight title. As an amateur Lalbiakkima was a solid, if often over-looked, fighter who scored numerous notable wins including a big one at the 2018 President's Cup against Hasanboy Dusmatov. He's expected to be moved quickly through the professional ranks and it seems that a win here will secure him a minor title and potential WBA world ranking. Singh on the other hand is a 17 year old who debuted as a professional in 2019 and despite being unbeaten is expected to be easy prey for Lalbiakkima.
In a supporting bout the once beaten Vimal Punera (4-1, 4) looks to score a 5th straight stoppage win as he takes on Hans Raj (2-3-1, 1). Punera lost his debut in 2018, in Australia, but since then has scored 4 quick wins, including an opening round TKO win over Raj in 2019. As for Raj he has struggled for victories, but won last time out and will be looking to avenge his prior to Punera. Interestingly the very lightly regarded IBA Asian Flyweight title is supposed to be on the line here.
Hannam 2nd Boxing Gymnasium, Seoul, South Korea
We also get some pretty noteworthy action in South Korea as we get the next show under the KBC banner. This is certainly not a big card but it does feature several fighters worthy of note including a very interesting main event, as we see an international fighter competing in Korea for the first time in well over a year.
That main event will see local star Hwang Kil Kim (13-2, 7) taking on Filipino fighter Gerpaul Valero (22-22-4, 16). On paper this is a mismatch, especially given Valero's inactivity, but the bout is one worthy of being aware of, and not just because it's an international bout in South Korea in these current times. Kim is one of the better Korean fighters, with a fun style and the actual ability to to move into the Oriental title scene in the comings years. Valero on the other hand is a fighter with one of the weirdest careers in the sport, having gone from 1-13-3 to 13-13-3, and having a record of 21-17-3 (15) when he was 25. There is potentially no fighter quite as inconsistent as Valero, but if he's on song he could be a real test for Kim... that is, however, a huge "if"
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Hollywood, Florida, USA
As well as the action in Asia we also get an interesting Heavyweight clash over in the US as former Azeri amateur standout Mahammadrasul Majidov (3-0, 3) takes a massive step up in class. The big punching Azeri will be up against the highly experienced Andrey Fedosov (31-3, 25), in what is actually the first genuinely meaningful bout for Majidov.
When he turned professional fans of hardcore boxing were really excited to see Majidov move through the ranks, given he debuted at the age of 32 it was assumed he would be fast tracked and moved aggressively. In his first 3 bouts however he was matched softly, and his most recent opponent really shouldn't have been in the ring. Here however he's in with the type of opponent he needs to be facing. The 35 year old Fedosov is a veteran, he's been in with a who's who and has never been an easy guy to beat. He has, however been out of the ring for well over 2 years. A win here for Majidov is expected, and, fingers, will launch him into bigger and better fights later in the year.
RCC Boxing Academy, Ekaterinburg, Russia
There is also set to be an RCC card in Russia. Sadly the full line up of this is yet to be confirmed at the time of writing. Thankfully though we do know a number of Central Asian fighters will be on the card.
The central Asian fighters include the debuting Bek Kamchybekov (0-0), who turns professional following a solid amateur career. The talented fighter, a multi-time national champion in Kyrgyzstan, will be up against Uzbekistan's Sherzodjon Abdurazzokov (1-2), in what looks like an easy debut, but could be a genuine test. Although Abdurazzokov has a losing record he has mixed with good prospects and given them a good test, we expect the same here.
Also lined up for this card was Ravshanbek Umurzakov (10-2, 7), although at the time of writing it's unclear if his bout will take place or not, at Umurzakov was said to have been suffering a minor injury a little while ago.
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
This coming Wednesday attention in Japan turns back to Korakuen Hall for a small, but note worthy, show promoted by former world champion Hiroshi Kawashima. The show is set to be a very small one, with just 5 bouts in total, but it does feature one of the most under-rated prospects in Japan.
That under-rated prospect is the highly skilled Ryusei Kawaura (8-0, 5), who enters this bout with his eyes on a future title fight of some kind. In the opposite corner to Kawaura will be the light punching, but popular, Joe Tanooka (15-7-5, 1). Coming in to this Kawaura is ranked highly in the ratings for JBC, OPBF and WBO Asia Pacific, and will know that another win will help him move him towards a Super Flyweight title, of some kind. Although under-rated there is no doubting Kawaura's talent, and he has long been dubbed "Untouchable II", adopting the "Untouchable" moniker from Kawashima himself. As for Tanooka he was touted early in his career, winning the East Japan Rookie of the Year crown in 2013 and going unbeaten in his first 10 bouts, going 7-0-3. Since then however he has gone 8-7-2 (1) and found that his style doesn't work against better fighters. Tanooka is a talented fighter, but sadly lacks the power needed to get respect from opponents. Sadly that's responsible for him going 1-4-1 in his last 6. Tanooka should ask questions of Kawaura but it's hard to imagine anything but a clear win for the unbeaten man.
The main event aside all the other bouts at 4 rounders, including a contest between Rush Miyake (1-8) and the debuting Kota Hasegawa (0-0). The 36 year old Miyake made his debut in 2012, scored his sole win in 2015 and has lost his last 6 in a row. As for Hasegawa, he's a 20 year old debutant who will be looking to kick start his career with a win, and he will be expected to win given Miyake's recent form.
Balai Sarbini Convention Hall, Jakarta, Indonesia
After a sting strong of delays we now get an interesting card from Indonesia, which was originally supposed to take place in the first few days of the month, before being pushed back to the 10th and now the 14th, due to incorrectly filed paper work from the promoter.
The main event here is a genuine treat for fans as the once beaten Tibo Monabesa (20-1-2, 8) clashes with Toto Landero (11-4-2, 2) in a WBC International Light Flyweight title fight. The talented Monabesa has notched two wins since his 2018 loss to Hiroto Kyoguchi and seemed to be getting his career back on track before the Covid19 Pandemic put boxing on ice in Indonesia. Landero on the other hand is a former world title challenger, who gave Knockout CP Freshmart a good test in 2018. Sadly he is 1-2 since that loss and he's not been able to generate much momentum in recent years. Saying that however Landero is not an easy out, for anyone, and he holds a very big win over Vic Saludar. If he's up for this, and if the bout takes place, Landero is a very live under-dog.
A second notable bout on this show will see unbeaten puncher Hebi Marapu (15-0, 11) take on Hero Tito (27-15-2, 11). Marapu was one of the Indonesia fighters that caught out eye years ago. He showed potential, power, an exciting style and like he had the tools to mix it on the regional scene. He could, and should, have out grown the Indonesian domestic scene. Sadly however he is now 32, and his career has really failed to kick on. Tito on the other hand is a true veteran of the Indonesian scene. He's nothing special, not by any stretch, but he's a veteran and he has been around the professional scene for more than 17 years now! Tito is limited but tough and should ask questions of Marapu, but it's still a shame that Marapu never moved above this level, and is still trudging along, wasting his potential.