This biggest of the Asian shows this coming Sunday comes from Aichi, where we see a really good main event, and two notable support bouts.
The really interesting main event will see Filipino Richard Pumicpic (21-8-2, 6) seek his second defense of the WBO Asia Pacific Featherweight title, as he goes up against Japanese teenager Musashi Mori (7-0, 5). On paper it's hard to go against the champion, who won the title in Japan by beating Hisashi Amagasa and then defended it against Yoshimitsu Kimura. The Filipino has regularly been a thorn in the side of Japanese boxing, and is expected to strike again here. Mori on the other hand is a talented and heavy handed youngster, who won the Rookie of the Year last year, and feel like he's the stronger man given he's coming down in weight. We're really excited about this one, and it could either solidify Pumicpic as a fringe contender, or launch Mori's career. A full preview of this fight can be read here Pumicpic faces Mori in next WBO regional title defense!
In a supporting bout we'll see Toshiya Yokogawa (9-11-1, 8) take on the OPBF ranked Super Bantamweight hopeful Takashi Igarashi (13-3, 5). Coming into this Igarashi is riding a 6 fight winning streak, but the reality is that his competition has been awful during that run, and it's hard to really say how good he actually is. The 33 year old Yokogawa doesn't have an impressive record, but an opening round win in September against Glenn Medura was impressive and will boost his confidence ahead of this bout.
Another supporting bouts on this card will see 25 year old Shin Tomita (9-5-2) take on Fire Ikkyu (6-1-1, 4). Although not a mouth watering bout on paper Tomita has mixed with good company, and has thrice fought recent Japanese title challenger Akihiro Toya. Ikkyu on the other hand is heavy handed, but was stopped himself last time out, by Masashi Tada. This is a well matched bout, but not the most exciting contest on the card.
As well as the show in Aichi, we also get a card in Kyoto.
One of the main bouts here will see former world title challengers clash, as Tamao Ozawa (14-5, 5) takes on Filipino foe Aisah Alico (7-9, 5). Despite both of these fighters coming up short in world title shots it does seem like Ozawa is the more likely to reach the top, and both of her defeats at world level were competitive, something that can't be said for Alico, who was stopped by Momo Koseki at Atomweight. Ozawa should have all the advantages here in what we suspect will be an easy win for the popular local.
The only other bout of note on this card will see Yusuke Hiranuma (8-3, 2) face off with Takaaki Kanai (9-8, 4), in what will technically be the show's headline bout. Hiranuma hasn't fought in over 18 months, though has won his last 3 bouts and has got promise if he decides to hit the ground running in 2019. Kanai on the other hand is a domestic journeyman, who is 2-5 in his last 7, but did upset Hideo Sakamoto earlier this year and can cause an upset when he's over-looked.
After a few big days of fights this coming Sunday feels more like a day to unwind, with only two small Japanese cards scheduled for the day.
The bigger of the two events takes place in Chiba and is an 8 round bout card promoted by Flash Akabane.
In an 8 round bout, which is strangely in the middle of the card, fans will see the unbeaten Fire Ikkyu (6-0-1, 4) take on one time Japanese title challenger Masashi Tada (11-5-3, 7). At 30 years old Ikkyu really needs to kick on if he's looking to have a shot at holding gold in his professional career. Ikkyu is unbeaten but really needs a big performance and will know that a potential Japanese ranking is in his grasp if he can defeat Tada. As for Tada, who lost in a Japanese Minimumweight title bout back in 2014 to Go Odaira, this is a chance to put a 4-fight win-less streak behind him. Tada has yet to return to winning ways since the loss to Odaira, and was notably stopped inside a round last year by Masamichi Yabuki. This isn't a huge bout on paper, but is a notable bout for both men.
A second notable bout on this card is a well matched contest between Atsushi Suzuki (5-3-2, 2) and Ryuki Ishii (7-3, 4). The 28 year old Suzuki has been a professional since early 2015 and has had very mixed for through his career. He's riding a 2 fight winning run into this, but had lost 3 of his 4 bouts prior to his recent wins. Ishii on the other hand is a 20 year old who had had better form over-all but had suffered losses to his most notable foes, including Shawn Oda and Kazuma Sanpei. This is a tough match up to call, but we dare suggest that Ishii is the fighter with the more upside.
The second card is the West Japan Rookie of the Year Final in Osaka. As with many of the Rookie of the Year cards this is an interesting card, with 10 bouts on it, but doesn't feature any notable names. In fact the most notable name involved is promoter Nobuhiro Ishida, who has 3 of his fighters in the final.
One of those Ishida promoted fighters is Middleweight hopeful Takeshi Dohi (1-0, 1), who battles against Hammer Gorilla (1-1) in a 4 round bout. Dohui made his debut in April, and it was a 101 second cameo as he quickly saw off Takenori Tsuchimoto and made an immediate impact on the professional ranks. The 30 year old Gorilla actually lost on his debut, in July 2017, but took a split decision this past April to advance to this final.
In another bout featuring an Ishida promoted fighter fans will see Lightweight hopeful Ryuhei Uchimura (3-0, 1) will face off with Aso Ishiwaki (3-1, 2). The unbeaten Uchimura, is a 24 year old who has scraped two split decision wins in his first 3 bouts and is perhaps lucky to have an unbeaten record. Ishiwaki on the other hand is a 19 year old Ishida promoted hopeful, who lost inside a round on his debut but has improved markedly since then and is looking to continue his rise here. This could be a very exciting contest, with the winner knowing they will take a huge step towards the All Japan Rookie of the Year final.
This coming Monday fight fans at the Korakuen Hall will get a pretty low key card, but one that does feature a few bouts of some note, with 3 JBC ranked fighters and a promising unbeaten hopeful.
The main event will see two ranked fighters facing off, with Light Welterweights Takashi Inagaki (20-16-2, 9) and Yusuke Konno (12-4, 6) fighting in what amounts to a Japanese title eliminator. Both men are ranked in the top 10 by the JBC and with both men being in their 30's they will know that they can't really afford any more set backs if they are to get a shot at the national title. Coming into this Inagaki has had some mixed results, losing 3 of his last 6, but has often faced off against bigger men with many of his bouts being at Welterweight. As for Konno he did fight for the Japanese title last year, and put up a great effort before being stopped in the 10th round by Koichi Aso. This isn't an amazing match up on paper, but with a lot at steak we're expecting a very hotly contested fight.
Another of the notable bouts will see the promising Fire Ikkyu (6-0, 4) risk his unbeaten record against the returning Yuji Okinori (8-4-1, 1), who hasn't fought since April 2017. Although unbeaten Ikkyu has been pushed to the wire twice and will know that another another close bout will hard his chances of moving into the Japanese rankings in the near future. As for Okinori he's actually the most proven opponent Ikkyu will have faced, despite having lost his last 2 bouts. Again this bout is likely to be better than it looks on paper.
The third Japanese ranked fighter in action here is Takaaki Kanai (9-7, 4) who takes on Hiroshi Niiza (7-4, 5). Coming in to this Kanai has a Bantamweight ranking with the JBC but will actually be competing at Super Bantamweight for this bout, as he looks to build on his career best win against Hideo Sakamoto back in March. A win here won't magically jump him to a number one contender, but a loss will set Kanai back massively. As for Niiza the 36 year old has gone 3-3 in his last 6, but has lost to the only notable fighters he has faced in those 6 bouts, and it's fair to say his career is coming to an end, win or lose here.
This coming Sunday is expected to be a really interesting day for fight fans with a number of show of interest, and some really notable fighters in action. Whilst it's not a huge day, it is certainly an interesting one, and one well worth making a mental note of as we move towards the weekend.
The show of the day comes from Russia where we get a host of Asian fighters making up the supporting cast of a card headlined by the always fun to watch Denis Lebedev.
The most notable bout on the card will see Russian fighter Dmitry Mikhaylenko (22-1, 10) battle against fast rising Uzbek contender Qudratillo Abduqaxorov (11-0, 8), with the Uzbek looking to make his first defense of the WBC Silver Welterweight title. On paper this is really the stand out bout of the day, and a real chance for the Uzbek to prove himself as a top contender, it is however a really tough test on Russian soil and he'll have to really be on the top of his game to shut down the “Mechanic”.
Another mouth watering bout sees former world title challenger Daiki Kaneko (26-5-3, 18) face off with the unbeaten Pavel Malikov (11-0, 5). The Japanese fighter is best known for his bout with Takashi Uchiyama, in which he dropped Uchiyama late, and sine then he has struggled to really shine, going 7-2. He will however see this as a huge opportunity to get his career back on track. For Malikov the bout is his first against a former world title challenger, and is a huge step up for the 31 year old Russian.
In another Russia Vs Japan bout we'll see Mark Urvanov (10-1, 6) take on Jin Miura (9-1, 1), with the two men fighting for the WBO Asia Pacific Youth Featherweight title. The bout looks great on paper, even if it's clear neither has lights out power. It's a huge test for both men and is the type of bout we love to see, with both men having something to gain and something to lose.
Another bout where both fighters will be fighting for a title will be a contest between unbeaten Tajik fighter Mukhammadkhuja Yaqubov (7-0, 4) and Japanese puncher Daiki Ichikawa (9-2, 7), who will face off for the WBO Lightweight title, currently held by Yaqubov. This is a real corker on paper and could be a coming out party for Ichikawa, who has stopped his last 3 and bounced back from a couple of defeats. Yaqubov has struggled himself, especially early in his career, and will need to prove himself here.
One final bout of note will see the unbeaten Zaur Abdullaev (4-0, 3) face off with Japanese fighter Mao Kawanishi (4-2, 1), in what looks likely to be a competitive 4 rounder.
The more notable of two Japanese cards comes from Osaka where we'll see a former Japanese title challenger headline and a former touted amateur make their debut.
Before we talk about the bouts which will take place we will just make a quick note that the card was supposed to be headlined by Juiki Tatsuyoshi (6-0, 4). Originally Tatsuyoshi was supposed to face off with Indonesian Jundullah M Fauzan (3-1), but the bout was cancelled just over a week before the contest due to Juiki suffering an injury. Sadly that injury has seen the card being pulled from the planned TV coverage that G+ was going to give the show.
The former Japanese title challenger on the card is former 2-time challenger Satoru Sugita (12-4-1, 7), who will now headline the card with a bout against Indonesian visitor Egy Rozten (5-15-2, 3). With losses in 2 of his last 3 we can't begrudge Sugita an easy bout, but it's a shame that the bout will now headline the card, because it's not a headline worthy contest.
In a supporting bout Kyosuke Tsutsumimoto (4-1, 3) will look to bounce back from his first career loss as he battles Takashi Okura (5-5, 1). The 22 year old Tsutsumimoto has been out of action since suffering his sole loss, in March 2016, but looks to be back with some hunger for his first 6 rounder. Okura has also been out of the ring for more than a year, and will be the under-dog, but will be a hungry fighter here looking for a chance to make a name for himself.
The most intriguing bout on the card sees former amateur stand out Ginjiro Tsutsumimoto (0-0), who really looked like a joy in some of his amateur contests, face off with Jio Alfriando (3-2, 2). In the unpaid ranks Tsutsumimoto went 24-3 and looked like a more accomplished fighter than his record suggests. He may not be in the mould of a super prospect, but he is certainly a highly capable young fighter, and the 19 year old is one to keep an eye out for.
A second show in Japan will take place in Chiba, with this card being a much smaller one
The first of two bouts of note on this card will see Yudai Tamagawa (9-8-1, 3) take on Ryuki Ishii (5-2, 4) in what looks like an intriguing bout, but nothing too mouth watering. Both of these fighters are southpaws and the bout should be competitive, but we do suspect that Ishii will be too good for Tamagawa.
A much more notable fight will see the unbeaten Fire Ikkyu (4-0, 3) take on Yoshiki Abe (5-5-3, 1) in a 6 rounder. Ikkyu will be fighting in his first 6 round bout and he should be favoured, however Abe is better than his record suggests and could put up a genuine fight here.
In Colorado we'll see Uzbek veteran Bexzod Nabiyev (25-9-1, 17) battle against Manuel Perez (27-12-1, 7) in a really well matched bout. The 31 year old Nabiyev looked like his career was fading away when he won 1 of 7 bouts a few years ago, but he's won his last 3 and will feel like he can make it 4 in a row as he takes on Perez, however Perez is much better than the opposite than Nabiyev has been beating.
For a second day running we're expecting to see action in Jakarta.
The main event of this card will see Stevanus Nana Bau (6-8-2, 2),who has twice lost to the touted Iwan Zoda, battle against the win-less Abeito Freitas (0-3) in a bout for the vacant Indonesia Boxing Association Light Flyweight title. Whilst we always doubt the completion of Indonesian records it's hard to believe that Freitas will be getting this title bout after being out of the ring for more than 4 years.
A more attractive under-card bout will see the half decent Isack Junior (24-7-2, 8), who has lost 6 of his last 8 but has lost those all on the road to good fighters, take on Boido Simanjuntak (23-46-2, 9). On paper this looks like a mismatch, but Junior has been inactive recently and the experienced Simanjuntak could be looking at this as a chance to end a 12 fight losing run.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
In Malaysia we'll see the experienced Filipino Carlo Magali (21-9-3, 10) face off with unbeaten Indian hopeful Sandeep Balhara (4-0, 3), who will be fighting outside of India for the first time. On paper the Filipino will be favoured, given his significant experience advantage, but it' lear that Balhara's team have got belief in their man to even take this fight.