Action really begins to pick up this coming weekend with a host of fights taking place that are worthy of attention. We get the first televised Japanese card of the year, the first televised Korean card of the year and the first world title fight involving an Asian of the year.
The Japanese card, which will be aired live on G+ as part of their Dynamic Glove series, is an interesting card with a fantastic main event and two notable fighters in supporting bouts.
Tha main event looks set to be a genuine shoot out as Shinobu Charlie Hosokawa (12-4-1, 11) defends his Japanese Middleweight title against Japanese national champion Kazuto Takesako (11-0-1, 11). Whilst Takesako's title isn't on the line we still see this as being a very special and explosive bout between two hard hitters each out to make a statement. We do not expect this one to go the distance, and instead we expect bombs to be fired off until one man ends up being saved by the referee. It might be a short bout, it might be a long one, but with the power of the two men combined this is going to be a brutal for as long as it lasts. Our preview of this bout can be read here Hosokawa and Takesako battle in clash of champions
In the chief support bout we'll see former world title challenger Takeshi Inoue (15-1-1, 9) make his first defense of the WBO Asia Pacific Light Middleweight title, as he takes on Chinese challenger Cheng Su (14-2-1, 8). Although this looks interesting on paper, with both men having similar looking records, we really can't see it being anything more than an easy defense for Inoue. Footage of Su shows him to be a slow, open and clumsy fighter and Inoue's pressure should grind him down in the middle rounds. Anything other than a stoppage for the champion should be seen as disappointing for a man who will be hoping to get a second world title fight in the near future. Our preview of this fight can be read here Takeshi Inoue takes on Cheng Su in WBO Asia Pacific title defense
Also on this card will be unbeaten prospect Takuma Takahashi (4-0, 4), who looks for his 5th straight win as he takes on Filipino journeyman Leonardo Doronio (17-17-3, 11). The talented Takahashi is likely to be looking at title fights by the end of 2020, and already holds a win over recent OPBF title challenger Sitthidet Banti, and this seems an easy first bout of the year. Doronio was once a capable Lightweight, and scored good wins against Al Rivera and Burning Ishii among others, but has gone 3-8-1 (2) in his last 12 and shouldn't be competing at Welterweight, a weight that really doesn't suit him.
We get more title action in Mexico, as WBC "interim" female Light Flyweight champion Kenia Enriquez (22-1, 9) defends her title against Japanese challenger Chaoz Minowa (6-2, 5). For Minowa this is a must win after coming up short in 2 previous world title bouts, and given her amateur reputation if Minowa does fail to claim some version of a world title it would be regarded as a huge achievement. Sadly for Minowa we've been very impressed by what we've seen of the technically sound Enriquez, who will be expecting to notch her 4th defense of the WBC interim title. We've previewed this bout here Chaoz Minowa returns to Mexico to face WBC interim queen Kenia Enqiruez!
Jeonju, South Korea
Back in Asia we also get an interesting card in South Korea, featuring 5 title bouts! These are 3 WBA Asia title bouts and 2 KBM title bouts.
One of those WBA Asia title bouts will see the heavy handed Yang Hyun Min (8-3, 7) take on Italian born Australian Danilo Creati (4-0, 1) for the WBA Asia Middleweight title. For Min this is a second regional title fight, after he gave Yuki Nonaka a surprisingly tough test last September in a WBO Asia Pacific title bout. Min is no world beater, but he hits hard, takes a short and is aggressive. As for Creati this will be a notable step up in class for the unbeaten Australian and will be his first bout in Asia. This could be a very interesting clash of styles.
In a WBA Asia Super Bantamweight title fight the unbeaten Min Jang (9-0-2, 2) will take on limited Chinese foe Junhui Zhao (4-5-2 1). Jang is a former Korean Super Flyweight champion but is said to have out grown the 115lb weight class and the 19 year old is expected to make a splash, at least domestically, at Super Bantamweight. Zhao will be a clear under-dog here, but should make for a good foil for the local hopeful.
The most interesting of the WBA Asia title bouts comes at Super Flyweight where former OPBF Flyweight champion Keisuke Nakayama (11-5-2, 5) take on once beaten Korean Woo Hyun Kim (8-1, 1). The local, a former "interim" PABA Bantamweight champion, has fought just once in the last 3 years, but that was a win against the previously mentioned Junhui Zhao, and he'll feel confident of picking up a career best win here. Nakayama on the other hand is 1-3-1 in his last 5 and has not looked good recent performances. Nakayama needs a win to keep his career alive, but we wouldn't be surprised at all if this was a third straight defeat for him.
The KBM title bout which has caught our attention sees all action Han Bin Suh (5-0-3, 4) defending his KBM Super Middleweight title against former amateur standout Dong Myung Shin (2-0). Suh really caught our attention last year, with the 19 year old going 2-0-2 for the year and being involved in some sensational bouts. Although not the most polished of fighters he did give us the vibe of being an old school Korean fighter. Shin is a talented fighter, and was a very experienced amateur turning professional, but with his 32nd birthday coming in March his best years are likely behind him. Interestingly when this bout was first announced Korean sources stated that if Suh won he would be chasing an OPBF title fight with Hiroaki Teshigawara later in the year, in what would be a massive step up in class.
The other KBM title fight takes place at Super Featherweight and will see unbeaten Korean based Kyrgyzstan fighter Urmat Amankulov (4-0-2, 3) battle against Seung Yoon Shin (4-3-3, 2) for the vacant title. Shin has scored 1 win in his last 3 and it would be a genuine surprise if he was competitive with Amankulov.
Camarines Sur, Philippines
One more Asian show of note will come from the Philippines, where we get some low level action.
In one of the most noteworthy bouts on this card the once beaten 21 year old local Michael Mendoza (10-1-2, 3) will battle Indonesian journeyman Stevanus Nana Bau (10-12-2, 2), with the two men trading blows for the lightly regarded WBF International Flyweight title. Coming in to this Mendoza has won 5 in a row since his soul defeat, to Arvin Magramo, almost 2 years ago and appears to be building some genuine momentum. Bau on the other hand has lost 4 of his last 6 and is win-less outside of Indonesia, with an 0-8 record on the road. Fair to say we're not expecting much of Bau here.
The only other bout of note here will see the once touted Al Sabaupan (25-3-1, 20) end a lengthy break from the ring to take on Benny Tamaela (4-9-1, 1) in an 8 rounder. Although Sabaupan hasn't fought since November 2016, when he was stopped by Jheritz Chavez, he'll be strongly favoured here. Tamaela is a 36 year old who has 1 win since the start of 2016 and is 2-9-1 in his last 12. An easy comeback for Sabaupan.
The biggest card of the weekend comes form Cebu and is a stacked ALA card.
The main event of the card will see former world title challengers Milan Melindo (34-2, 12) and Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr (31-4-1, 16) face off to crown a new IBF “interim” Light Flyweight champion, and decide the mandatory challenger for current world champion Akira Yaegashi. Melindo, fighting in his third world title fight, should be favoured here but Fahlan has put in his best performances as the under-dog, and the Thai is of course best known for upsetting Ryo Miyazaki. The bout should be a really intriguing one given the match up, and the fact that the winner moves into a world title bout this is an incredibly significant bout.
In a support bout will see the world ranked Jason Pagara (39-2, 24) battle former world champion Jose Alfaro (28-10-1-2, 24) in an interesting 10 rounder. Alfaro is a long way removed from his short reign as the WBA Lightweight world champion, but still has power and could still hurt Pagara who has shown himself to be a genuine world class fight. Sadly for Alfaro his only chance is a puncher's chance.
Staying with the Pagara family another bout will see the once beaten Albert Pagara (26-1, 18), who was last seen being stopped by Cesar Juaez, take on the tough but limited Raymond Commey (16-3, 9), who we saw lose to Qiu Xiao Jun not too long ago. The bout is a big question of Pagara's mental state, and whilst he should be favoured there is some worries that he will be damaged goods given the way he couldn't see Juarez and was stopped himself as Juarez rode the storm and came back strongly. Commey appears to be very durable and could be a real nightmare down the stretch for Pagara.
A really interesting looking all Filipino under-card bout will see former OPBF title challenger Jimmy Paypa (18-3-1, 6) battle the under-rated Jerry Nardo (21-9, 11) in what could potentially help decide a future OPBF title challenger. On paper Paypa should be favoured, especially given that Nardo has gone 2-5 in his last 7, but Nardo can spring upsets at domestic level and this bout could be a banana skin for Paypa.
Another good looking all-Filipino domestic bout will see Jeo Santisima (11-2, 10) face recent OPBF challenger Rex Wao (11-3, 9) in what look like a potentially explosive bout between very well matched fighters, at least on paper.
One of the most promising Filipino fighters is Kevin Jake Cataraja (4-0, 3) who looks for win #5 as he takes on the more experienced John Kenan Villaflor (6-1-2, 2) on a minor step up, and will hopefully be Cataraja's final bout before being stepped up. Another unbeaten hopeful in action here is the big punching Melvin Jerusalem (10-0, 7), who takes on Bonjun Loperez (10-5-1, 5) in a bit of a stay busy bout for the unbeaten youngster.
A second Filipino card of the day comes from Batangas.
In the headline bout on this card we'll see a rematched between the experienced Roberto Gonzales (27-2, 17) and Ryan Sermona (19-8, 12), who fight for the GAB Lightweight title. On paper it looks like a straight forward first defense for Gonzalez, who has won his last and 7 bouts, however he was stopped by Sermona when the two men first fought back in May 2012 and Sermona will be confident of scoring a second win over Gonzalez.
In an interesting match up we'll see the experienced Al Sabaupan (25-2-1, 20) battle Jheritz Chavez (5-1-2, 3) in a real cross roads. Sabaupan had once been tipped as a world title contender but losses in 2012 and 2013 ended those hopes. Sabaupan has won his last 5 but hasn't shown his early promise in recent years and has only fought twice in he last 25 months. Chavez was beaten last time out but is unbeaten at home and could prove to be a total handful for Sabuapan.
Another bout on the show will see Glenn Porras (29-4, 17) battle against the very limited Jayar Estremos (10-12, 4). Porras was beaten just 2 fights back, though that was back in December 2012 and he has did return to winning ways last time out. Estremos is a very limited fighter and it would be a huge surprise for him to test Porras, even with Porras' recent lack of activity.
Icheon City, South Korea
In South Korea fans will see former world champion Eun Hye Lee (8-1, 3) battle against Thailand's Nongnun Mor Krungthepthonburi (5-3-1) in a bout for the WIBA Flyweight title. Lee was unlucky to not become a 2-weight world champion this year, losing a controversial bout to Nana Yoshikawa. The Thai will be the huge under-dog and we can't see how she wins here.
In Mexico we'll see Japanese born, Mexican based, Shoki Sakai (21-6-1, 13) face off with Jose Lopez (26-6-2, 15) in a really well matched bout. Sakai has suffered back-to-back setbacks, albeit controversial ones, and will be looking to score his second win of the year. Whilst Sakai has been unfortunate this year Lopez had been in a bad run of form, going 1-3-1 in his last 5 bouts over the last 14 months.
Finally Japanese action for the month kicks off with an interesting card at the Korakuen Hall, a card that will be televised on NTV G+.
In the main event of this card fans will see former world title challenger Ryosuke Iwasa (20-2, 12) take on Dennis Tubieron (19-6-2, 8) in an all Southpaw bout at Featherweight. Notably this sees both men looking to begin 2016 with a win after both suffered losses in the UK in 2015, with Iwasa being stopped by Lee Haskins and Tubiueron losing to be Josh Warrington and Mitchell Smith. It's hard to back Tubieron here but he'll come to win and it should make for an interesting match up.
Another former world title challenger in action here Motoki Sasaki (39-10-1, 24) who fights for the first time in almost 3 years. Sasaki, who lost world title challengers to Humberto Soto and Vyacheslav Senchenko, will be up against the limited but heavy handed Tatsuya Miyazaki (8-7-1, 8) in what could be a fun to watch bout, though we suspect Sasaki isn't the fighter he once was.
The best matched bout on the card will see Kenji Ono (9-1, 4) battle against Jun Takigawa (7-1-1, 4) in a bout that could lift the winner towards a Japanese title fight later in the year. This is really well matched and could go either way, a fantastic bit of match making.
The main event isn't the only Japan vs Philippines bout on the card with another being a match up between once beaten local Masaru Sueyoshi (10-1, 6) and visitor Marbon Bodiongan (12-3-2, 10) in what could be a really exciting match up. Both men will be looking to take home the win and neither will back down from a fight here in what could be the most exciting bout on the card.
Camarines Sur, Philippines
In Camarines Sur Filipino fans get a show that seems rather fill of mismatches.
In the main event fans will see the once touted Al Sabaupan (24-2-1, 19) take on Thailand's Kosol Sor Vorapin (17-19-1, 11) in what should be little more than a blow than a stay busy but for Sabaupan, who is hunting a 5th straight stoppage win. The Thai has lost his last 7 by stoppage and it seems almost certain that he will be stopped again here
As well as the mismatch of a main event the supporting bouts also look like mismatches, though we are interested to see how 17 year old hopeful Michael Mendoza (3-0) copes with Manny Mamacquiao (1-7-1) in a 6 rounder. A similar match up will see Jerry Mae Villagracia (3-0, 2), also 17, take on Alberto Pentecostes (1-8-1).
Another Filiupino show looks to be more well matched, though lacks the star power that Sabaupan has.
One of the two bouts of note here will see Lester Abutan (8-4-3, 4) take on Powell Balaba (8-16-1, 5) in a bout in the Minimumweight division. This looks likely to be a win for Abutan, though the 24 year old will know that he needs to do more than just “win” here.
The other main bout is much more interestingly matched and will see Marlon Arcilla (8-3, 1) face off against Eric Panza (8-6-1, 2) in what should be a good test for the 21 year old Arcilla.
In Baku fans get the chance to see local star Fariz Mammadov (18-2-1, 12) attempt to claim a “world title” as he battles Badru Lusambya (24-2-2, 22) for the WBF crown at 154lbs. Given that Lusambya, a Ugandan puncher, has been inactive for 2 years it's easy to favour Mammadov, however Lusambya has got genuine power and could upset the local fans if he connects cleanly on the Baku man.
In the US fans will see the unbeaten Dimash Niyazov (8-0-3, 4), originally from Kazakhstan, face off against a yet to be named opponent.
On the same card fans will also get the debut of Serdar Hudayberdiyev (0-0), who is also facing a yet to be named foe.
Yorkshire, United Kingdom
In the UK fans will be able to see British-Yemeni fighter Muheeb Fazeldin (7-0-1, 3) battle Klaas Mboyane (18-10-2, 9) for the Commonwealth Bantamweight title. Fazeldin has won his last 5 bouts but this is a notable step up and could be too much too soon for the 23 year old Southpaw.
Camarines Sur, Philippines
On the more significant Filipino show we get some interesting fighters, though unfortunately they tend to be involved in mismatches and sadly we're not expecting a fantastic card of action, despite being fans of a number fighters on the show.
One such fighter is very talented Michael Dasmarinas (18-2, 11) who will be fighting against the chinny Aroel Romasasa (11-7, 5). Dasmarinas came to our attention last year when he defeated Hayato Kimura in Japan and although he lost last time out, to Lwandile Sityatha, we do have a feeling that this young man is going far.
Another man looking to rebuild after a recent loss is youngster Renerio Arizala (12-1-1, 5) who will be looking to score his second win since suffering a stoppage loss to Ardin Diale. Arizala will be fighting former world ranked fighter Lionel Legada (12-7-1, 5) in what looks to be a real crossroads bout. Whilst Arizala is rebuilding it's fair to see that Legada needs a win having lost 5 of his last 8!
One fighter hoping to extend a 5 fight winning streak is the once touted Nino Magboo (17-2-1, 8) who should have an easy time with journeyman Mike Espanosa (12-9-1, 7). Magboo is unlikely to ever move into world title bouts but he should be more than capable of picking up easy win here.
Others on this card including Bernabe Concepcion (32-6-2, 18) and Al Sabaupan (23-2-1, 18) though at the time of writing neither of these men had opponents listed.
NOTE-BOXREC NOW LISTS THIS SHOW FOR JANUARY 23RD. We are sorry IF this show does take place a day earlier than suggested here.
The second Filipino show looks a lot less interesting as Diarh Gabutan (19-4-3, 10) battles against a yet to be named opponent. This will be Gabutan's second bout since he suffered a trio of defeats in 2013 and it's fair to say that his career depends on a win here.
In the US we have three talented Russian's in action with both of them being involved in very good looking bouts.
The tougher of the bouts sees the once beaten Maxim Vlasov (30-1, 15) go up against the very highly touted Mexican Super Middleweight Gilberto Ramirez Sanchez (30-0, 24). We'll be honest we suspect this could be very painful for Vlasov who is up against a sensationally talented fighter here.
The second Russian is the unbeaten Konstantin Ponomarev (26-0, 13) who will be hoping to extend his unbeaten record as he takes on Canadian fighter Steve Claggett (20-2-1, 14) in a very interesting 10 rounder. We have to suspect that the 22 year old “Talant” from Miass will continue his unbeaten start however this is likely to be his toughest bout to date and a real chance to see just how good he really is. A clear win for Ponomarev will almost certainly take him into the world rankings.
The third is Aik Shakhnazaryan (15-0, 6) who will be battling against Abner Lopez (21-4, 19) in what we suspect will be a great test of Shakhazaryan's chin. Lopez's record is inflated with a lot of low level KO's though on paper he represents a good test for the world ranked Russian.
September 21st-Dasmarinas and Sabaupan in action in the Philippines whilst Eguchi fights in his retirement bout in Japan
With Saturday being a huge day in boxing it's fair to say that Sunday was never going to deliver nearly as much. Saying that however we do have interesting bouts spread across a pair of Asian shows.
Camarines Sur, Philippines
The more interesting of the two Asian cards takes place in the Philippines as Saved by the Bell Promotions put on a notable card at the Pili Capitol Convention Center.
The main event here will see the criminally under-rated Michael Dasmarinas (17-1, 10) taking on Indonesian tough guy Oscar Raknafa (12-6, 5). For Dasmarinas this will be his first bout since he impressed us with a clear win over Hayota Kimura back in July and if he manages to take home a win here, he will have recorded an excellent 15 straight wins. Although a talented prospect Dasmarinas has remained well under the radar though he'll know if he continues winning he'll gain a worth while following. As for Raknafa he has lost his last 3 bouts including a decision to the then debuting Kosei Tanaka though he'll know that a win here could help him to earn other notable pay days.
In the co-feature we get another promising Filipino fighting an Indonesian foe as Al Sabaupan (22-2-1, 17) battles against the busy Eddy Comaro (27-21-5, 11). Sabaupan is completely different to Dasmarinas though is the more exciting fighter with seriously hurtful power, especially at this level. Limited in terms of skills Sabaupan has been likened to Manny Pacquiao, at least in terms of looks, and although he's fun to watch he hasn't been able to impress in his 2 most notable bouts to date. Comaro is best known for losing to Michael Katsidis earlier this year and is likely to be blown here by Sabaupan, especially when you consider that he's been selected as an opponent to make the Filipino good.
A third notable Filipino on this show will be Benezer Alolod (15-5-5, 5). Although relatively unknown Alolod is actually a world ranked fighter and has gone 1-1 with Rey Loreto and has also scored a notable stoppage over Jerson Mancio. His opponent hasn't yet been named though we do have high hopes for the 23 year old "Bulldozer".
As well as the bouts mentioned there will be several others on this show albeit less interesting looking contests.
The other card in Japan and is headlined by an 8 rounder between Ryuji Miyazaki (12-7-3, 4) and Yasuyuki Otagaki (5-1-3, 1). Neither of these guys have any wins that really stand out as being incredible though we do need to say that it looks interesting on paper. Miyazaki is clearly the more experienced man going in to this bout and has faced the better opponents however he has been fighting at Super Bantamweight recently and this bout will be fought at just below the Super Featherweight limit, that gives Otagaki a clear edge considering that's his usual weight.
The other 7 bouts on this card are all scheduled for 4 rounds suggesting that it will be numerous novices in action. They might end up being in some great bouts but they are at a very low level and include the debut of 17 year old Nakayasu Shinen (0-0) who we have been told to keep an eye on.
One other note that needs to be added about this show is the fact that card will also feature the retirement bout of former Japanese Middleweight champion Keiji Eguchi who will fight a 2 round exhibition with former OPBF Welterweight champion Taisei Marumoto.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
A new week of action closes out the month of May with some interesting bouts in the Philippines. The day isn't a busy one, especially not by recent standards, but their should be enough worth while action to keep fans in the venue more than satisfied.
Camarines Sur, Philippines
The main event here is between the well regarded Al Sabaupan (21-2-1, 16) and Tanzanian visitor Sadiki Momba (16-3-2, 4). Sabaupan may not be world class but he's not far off being a decent gate keeper and he should see off Momba, probably inside the distance in all honesty.
Whilst the main event is really good thee card has a number of interesting support bouts. These include a very solid contest between the unbeaten JR Magboo (14-0-2, 7) and the under-rated Angelito Merin (7-3-2, 1) in what could be a tough ask for Magboo, despite the very different records of the two men involved in the bout.
Another solid bout from the show will see Jetro Pabustan (22-2-5, 6) battling against journeyman Danilo Pena (26-17-3, 11). On paper this looks like a mismatch but Pena is a very testing opponent and we certainly don't expect this to be as one sided as the records would suggest.
(Image, of Sabaupan, courtesy of boxrec.com)