March is set to be an amazingly busy month, and there is no delay as we kick off the month with a WBA Minimumweight title fight. That fight will see defending champion Knockout CP Freshmart (14-0, 6) battle against Japanese challenger Go Odaira (13-5-3, 1), with Odaira looking to secure a world title in his third world title shot. The unbeaten champion, who had a great 2016 with wins over Carlos Buitrago, Byron Rojas and Shin Ono will be looking to make his second defense of the title and solidify his standing as one of the elite Minimumweight. On paper this should be a straight forward win for Knockout who will likely be looking for bigger fish than Odaira later in the year.
Seoul, South Korea
As well as the world title fight in Thailand there will also be a show in Seoul, courtesy of Boxing M.
The main event of the card will see the unbeaten Ji Soo Jung (3-0, 1) battle against Ma Roo Jung (6-4-1, 2) in the final of the Boxing M Welterweight competition. Interestingly these two men fought last December, with Ji Soo Jung taking a competitive 4 round decision over his foe, and he'll be looking to do the same again here in an attempt to extend his unbeaten record. The more experience Ma Roo Jung impressed last time out, when he destroyed Doo Hyup Kim, and will be looking to avenge his December defeat here.
In a supporting bout we'll see Joon Yong Lee (5-4-4, 3) take on Gyu Won Lee (4-1-1, 2) in a 6 rounder. Although this bout doesn't look remarkable on paper it is worth noting that Joon Yong Lee holds a draw with OPBF Middleweight champion Koki Tyson, and in fact deserved a win over Tyson when the two men fought last year. Gyu Won Lee started his career 0-1-1 but has subsequently won 4 in a row to get his career on track.
Another 6 rounder will see Bum Kyoo Lee (2-1) face off with O Gon Kwon (4-1-1, 4) in an interesting match up. Lee impressed in his first two bouts before suffering a razor thin loss to Doo Hyup Kim in January. As for Kwon he was beaten on his debut in February 2016 but has since gone 4-0-1 and appears to be a solid puncher, with 4 stoppages already at this sort of level
Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
On Tuesday Japanese fans will get a trio of female title fights at the Korakuen Hall. Just a day later attention turns to Thailand where we get a male world title fight, and continue to move towards the really end of year bouts.
That title bout will see WBA Minimumweight champion Knockout CP Freshmart (13-0, 6) take on Japan's Shin Ono (19-7-3, 3). The unbeaten Thai will be fighting for the first time since unifying the WBA and WBA interim titles, back in June, and will be looking to end the year as one of the stand out Minimumweights. Whether he's the best in the division or not is open to debate but he's certainly in the mix thanks to notable wins over Nicaraguan pair Byron Rojas and Carlos Buitrago. Ono is best known for coming up short in an IBF title fight against Katsunari Takayamabut has gone 2-1-1 since that loss, with both setbacks coming at Japanese domestic level. It's hard to see Knockout losing here but it's good to see him in the ring again before the end of the year.
On the under-card will be another Japan Vs Thailand bout as former 2-time world title challenger Go Odaira (12-5-3, 1) returns from March's stoppage loss to Wanheng Menayothin to battle Fahpituck Por Pakdee (6-1, 3). Odaira will know that anything but a win here could finish off his career which has failed to really live up to the potential it once showed.
In Japan Misako will be putting on a lowl level card.
The main event of the show will see Masajiro Honda (6-7, 4) battle against Shun Shimazaki (7-8-1, 2) in an 8 rounder. Both of these guys are struggling, with both having won just 2 of their last 6, but together they should make for a hotly contested and very interesting match up that should rovides some thrills for the fans in attendance.
Whilst the main event isn't anything great it's hard not to be excited about the chief support bout which will see Itsuki Tomioka (0-0) battle Tatsuki Shinozuka (0-0) in an all-debut 6 rounder. To be licensed to fight in a 6 rounder a Japanese fighter needs a B license, which should automatically mean that they have managed to prove their ability to the JBC. It's worth noting that fighters who begin in 6 rounders typically have solid amateur backgrounds, or backgrounds form other combat sports, and have developed an understanding of the fight game. As a result we're actually quite excited about this bout despite neither man having had a professional bout before
Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
This coming month is a packed one with title fights and notable contests taking place all over the place. The first of those notable title bouts takes place on March 3rd in Thailand as unbeaten WBC Minimumweight king Wanheng Menayothin (40-0, 15) defends his title against Japanese challenger Go Odaira (12-4-3, 1). The champion, seeking his 4th defense of the title, is one of the most under-rated fighters on the planet and should be favoured here though Odaira does have the style to cause some problems for the champion, who has yet to face a real challenge since winning the title in late 2014.
Sadly we're unsure who will be featured on the under-card of this show, however with the broadcast, on Channel 7 set to be for 3 hours, between 14:00 local time and 17:00 local time it's clear that there will be other fights on this show, with the likelihood being that some notable fighters will be in action.
(Image courtesy of Thairec.com)
The Dangan series returns this Thursday in what originally looked like one of the best Japanese shows of the year so far. Originally it featured not only title action, with a pair of title bouts, but also a brilliant all prospect match up and two bouts between ranked contenders on the domestic scene. It wasn't stacked with world class talent but as far as a domestic show it was very solid on paper. Sadly however we saw one bout change at late notice leaving us with a respectable, but less impressive card.
The changed fight will see Japanese and OPBF Middleweight champion Akio Shibata (24-8-1, 10) fight against Indonesian visitor Michael Speed Sigarlaki (15-13-2, 13) in a non-title bout. Originally however Shibata was supposed to defend his unified crown against Yasuyuki Akiyama (10-4-1, 8). Sadly however Akiyama suffered an injury just over a week before the fight resulting in this change.
The first of the still notable bouts on this show will see ranked Super Bantamweight Kenta Toi (4-4, 1) battle against Keita Nakano (12-9-2, 2). On paper this is a mismatch however Toi scored a career defining win last time out, stopping Mikihito Seto, and is looking to build on that huge upset. Nakano will be the favourite coming in here but he is up again a man flying high and who will be full of confidence.
Possibly the standout bout of the show is between prospects as the much touted Ken Shiro (2-0, 1) battles the more experienced Katsunori Nagamine (10-0, 6). Nagamine was the 2012 All Japan Super Flyweight Rookie of the Year however he has been relatively in active since then with just 3 bouts in the last 2 years. Ken Shiro, the son of former OPBF and Japanese champion Hisashi Teraji, is viewed as another “Super prospect” and a win here will likely boost him to getting a title fight of some type later in the year. Notably Ken Shiro will be taking this fight at 112lbs, a weight that sees him fighting for the first time as a fully blown Flyweight.
In a third bout of note we will see OPBF and Japanese ranked Ryuichi Funai (22-6, 15) battle Japanese ranked Ryuta Otsuka (14-7-2, 4). Funai is on a 5 fight willing streak since coming up short against Rolly Lunas in an OPBF title fight back in 2012, that is his only loss in the last 4 years. As for Otsuka he has had mixed fortunes with a record of 3-3-1 in his last 7 however he has been in with Yuki Nasu, Konosuke Tomiyama, Teiru Kinoshita and Malcolm Tunacao during that run of 7 bouts. Neither of these guys will ever be world champions but both are fighting to get a shot as a Japanese or OPBF title in the near future and will put it all on the line to pick up a win here.
The remaining title bout will see Japanese Minimumweight champion Go Odaira (11-4-3, 1) defending his title again Yutaka Sowano (9-5-1, 6). For Odaira this is a return to the Japanese domestic level after coming up short in a world title fight with Katsunari Takayama on New Year's Eve and although he was stopped by Takayama it's hard to see Sowano really testing him here. As for Sowano this is a big step up in class.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
After having seen the excellent "Super Boxeo" show on December 30th, including Naoya Inoue's historic win over Omar Andres Narvaez, we now get to look forward to New Year's Eve which features 2 massive shows with 5 world title fights between them!
Of the two New Year's Eve shows in Japan the best is in Osaka in an Ioka-Kyoei joint promotion card. This show is notable pretty much from top to bottom with major almost every bout featuring either a title level fighters, a prospect or a notable name.
One of the interesting under-card bouts will see unbeaten female hopeful Terumi Nuki (5-0, 2) battle battle against debuting Thai Petchluksor Sor Praithong (0-0). It's thought that if Nuki wins here her next bout will be an OPBF title bout as she moves towards a world title bout sometime in the next 2 years. Another notable Japanese female fighter on this show is Tomomi Takano (6-1, 5) who also finds herself up against a debuting Thai in the form of Rannada Sor Vorapin (0-0).
The two female fights are both scheduled for 6 rounds as are two of the male bouts. One of those will see the busy Takeru Kamikubo (7-0, 4) fighting for the 8th time this year. Sadly the talented Kamikubo has been matched very softly here as he fights against the win-less Phetsaifar Lukmaelamperigym (0-5). For Phetsaifar this is likely to be his 6th straight stoppage loss and his 5th in Japan having previously lost to Kamikubo's stable mate Masayoshi Hashizume and the very interesting Kohei Kashino. The other will see Ryuto Maekawa (9-0, 5) fighting against Chanachai Sor Siamchai (0-1).
In an 8 rounder the heavy handed Takahiro Yamamoto (14-3, 11) will find himself up against Thailand's Kamraiyok Or Wandavee (0-0). Yamamoto comes into this bout on the back of 8 successive victories and has shown real promise with all 3 of his losses being very close decision losses. Another 8 rounder on this show will see former world champion Ryo Miyazaki (21-1-3, 12) fighting against Kajonsak Nattapolgym (0-0). For Miyazaki this bout falls exactly a year after his sole loss to, another Thai Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr., and he'll be hoping to avoid the same fate here.
The first title fight on this show will see the promising Sho Ishida (17-0, 9) making the first defence of the Japanese Super Flyweight title as he battles against Masato Morisaki (9-3-1, 5) in what looks to be a relatively straight forward defense for the talented Ishida. From what we understand if Ishida is successful here their will be moves to make a bout between Ishida and Teiru Kinoshita in 2015.
The second title fight on this show will be a strange unification bout as the IBF and WBO vacant belts will be unified. The belt situation of the bout is an odd one but the fight it's self looks to be a great one as former multi-time world champion Katsunari Takayama (27-7-0-1, 10) battles against Japanese champion Go Odaira (11-3-3, 1). This bout is expected to be very high paced and all action though it's not expected to have the “drama” that some may expect in a FOTY contender.
Splitting up world titles fights fans we will see former 2-division champion Kazuto Ioka (15-1, 9) battle against former "interim" world champion Jean Piero Perez (20-7-1, 14). This bout does look like a disappointing one considering the quality of Ioka and the fact Perez has been struggling in recent years, though it does seem like Ioka will be fighting in a WBA world title fight early next year against Juan Carlos Reveco, who recently defended his title with a stoppage victory against Yodmongkol Vor Saengthep.
In the main event fans will see Cuban sensation Guillermo Rigondeaux (14-0, 9) defending his WBO and WBA "super" Super Bantamweight titles against OPBF Featherweight champion Hisashi Amagasa (28-4-2, 19). The talented Cuban is a clear betting favourite going into this bout but the contest does look like an interesting one given that Amagasa will have a massive size advantage and also an advantage in activity with Rigondeaux having only fought one round in the last 12 months.
In Tokyo we have the “other” show promoted by Watanabe. Although there are 3 world titles on this show the card it's self is actually the weaker of the two cards with 2 of the 3 world title fights looking like mismatches.
The main event will be one of those mismatch world title fights as WBA Super Featherweight champion Takashi Uchiyama (21-0-1, 17) looks to make the 9th defence of his belt. The heavy handed Japanese fighter, known as “KO Dynamite”, will be defending his belt against 35 year old Argentinian challenger Israel Hector Enrique Perez (27-2-1, 16), a man who really doesn't look fit to step in the ring against Uchiyama.
In another world title fight fans will see the popular Kohei Kono (30-8, 13) defending his WBA Super Flyweight world title for the first time since he re-won it earlier this year with a KO of Denkaosan Kaovichit. The "Tough Boy" will be defending his title against Dominican challenger Norberto Jimenez (20-8-3, 10). Sadly like the other bout the challenger looks completely out of his depth and is unlikely to pose much of a threat.
The most interesting of the title fights is at Light Flyweight where Ryoichi Taguchi (20-2-1, 8) attempts to become a world champion. Taguchi is involved in the most interesting of the world title bouts as he takes on Peru's WBA Light Flyweight world champion Alberto Rossel (32-8-0-1, 13). For Taguchi this is the most significant fight of his career and is clearly his toughest since he fought the then fat rising Naoya Inoue.
As well as the 3 world title fights there are a further 6 other bouts on the same card though none of them feature anyone of note.
For those wanting to watch the main bouts from his show they will be televised on TV Tokyo.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
The popular Dangan series of shows returns this Tuesday for it's 11th edition. The show features 8 bouts in total and will be headlined by two title fights whilst also featuring a trio of B class tournament final bouts, all in all providing a very solid card.
The show begins with a sole 4 rounder as debutants battle each other in a Light Welterweight bout. We've not been given the fighters names for this bout though with debutants colliding it's likely to be a competitive bout between two men hoping to record a debut win. The second bout on the show will also be a 4 rounder as the unbeaten Kamiya Haruaki (2-0, 1) battles against Keisuke Fujii (3-4, 2) in an interesting low level bout.
The first of the three B tournament final bouts will take place at Light Flyweight as the heavy handed Daisuke Hayakawa (7-2, 6) battles against the tough but feather fisted Masahiro Ouchi (6-7). This looks like a mismatch on paper though could be an interesting test for Hayakawa.
The second of the B class tournament final bout will be a Featherweight bout between the limited but experienced Yoshihisa Yokota (6-10-1, 2) and Kenji Fujiyama (5-3, 3). Sadly this looks almost as poor as the first bout B class bout.
The final of the B class bouts is the best of the bunch as Yutaka Kamioka (7-3-2, 4) takes on the once beaten Gaku Aikawa (6-1-1, 1) in a very good looking Super Bantamweight contest. We have to favour Aikawa but only just and this is the sort of bout that we love to see thrown up in the B class tournament contests that Dangan put on.
Following the B class bouts we get an interesting looking 8 rounder between two Japanese ranked Welterweights. The bout will see #5 ranked Moon Hyun Yun (14-4-2, 2) battle against #7 ranked Ryota Itoyama (10-5-1, 5) in what is effectively an eliminator for a Japanese title fight with the once beaten Suyon Takayama.
Talking about title fights the penultimate bout on the show will be an OPBF female Minimumweight title fight between defending champion Saemi Hanagata (9-4-2, 4) and former 2-time title challenger Mika Oda (5-7-1, 1). Oda will be hoping this it third time lucky whilst Hanagata will be hoping to record the first defense of the title she won earlier this year.
The other title fight on this show will see the world ranked Go Odaira (10-3-3, 1) defending his Japanese Minimumweight title against the once beaten Hiroya Yamamoto (8-1, 3). On paper this looks like a good bout though in reality it is likely to be a very one sided contest with Odaira much, much more proven than his challenger who has never competed at anything close to the level before.
(Image courtesy of Dangan Boxing)
A new week kicks off in style on Monday with two Japanese title fights. We'll admit last week was a bit rubbish in terms of fights but with this week kicking off like this we can only expect a great week from start to end.
The show, which features 7 bouts in total, begins with a trio of low level match ups before we move on to a series of very good fights.
In the first of those top match ups will see the #1 ranked OPBF Bantamweight challenger Monico Laurente (24-10, 5) attempting to defend his ranking against Japan's hard hitting Yuta Nakagawa (12-4-1, 8). Although Laurente has lost 3 of his last 5, including defeats to Shun Kubo and Tomoki Kameda, he is still a worthy fighter to be highly ranked and Nakagawa will under-stand that he's in with a tough and determined foe. Unranked himself Nakagawa has a lot to gain here and not much to lose so we expect him to give a great effort.
Following the Laurente/Nakagawa bout we then get another interesting bout around the Bantamweight division as former OPBF champion Hiroki Shiino (10-3, 9) takes on Filipino journeyman Rodel Tejares (20-28-9, 5). On paper this may not look like much of a fight but Tejares is tough and Shiino is trying to come back from a stoppage loss to Ryosuke Iwasa last December. Shiino has the power to be fun but we do wonder whether he has much of a long term future in the sport.
The first of the two main events will see Japanese Minimumweight champion Go Odaira (9-3-3, 1) defending his belt for the first time as he fights Yuma Iwahashi (11-6-1, 1). We tend to feel that Odaira has everything he needs to see off Iwahashi who has never really impressed us. Odaira looked great in his title win earlier this year as he showed off great movement and fantastic speed and we expect to see the same here.
After the Minimumweight title fight we then move through the weights as Japanese Super Featherweight champion Rikki Naito (9-0, 5) makes the first defence of his title. Naito, one of the most promising prospects in Japan right now, will be tackling the experienced Kyohei Tamakoshi (32-8-6, 12) who will likely know that anything but a win could end his career. Tamakoshi will need to find the form that saw him defeating Dante Jardon back in 2011 though we're unsure if he will ever secure another win as meaningful as that one.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp and Dangan Boxing)
Although this week hasn't been a great one for fight fans it does end on a high with a great Friday which features 2 major title fights in different countries.
In regards to the biggest fight of the day we actually feel it's in Bangkok as the unbeaten Teerachai Kratingdaenggym (23-0, 17) defends his PABA Welterweight super title against Mexican foe Fernando Castaneda (21-7, 14). We've no idea how this has been sanctioned as a PABA title fight though it should prove to be a decent test for Teerachai who probably needs a better test before moving much further with his career.
Castaneda, a former interim world title challenger, is the best opponent Teerachai has faced though we feel that the Thai should remain undefeated.
This card, which will be televised on Thai Channel 7 is expected to have other bouts, though unfortunately we're not sure on what those bouts will be.
Although the biggest fight is in Thailand we think the best fight is actually in Japan on "Dangan 92" as we get a Japanese title fight and a further 6 contests.
The main event, a bout for the vacant Japanese Minimumweight title, will see Go Odaira (8-3-3, 1) tackling Masashi Tada (11-3-1, 7) in what looks like a genuine 50-50 contest. If Odaira can take the power of Tada then we swing towards him, though with Tada having genuine power at both Minimumweight and Light Flyweight he certainly has a big enough dig on his to make things very interesting.
Whilst the main event is the stand out contest we've got to admit we're just as excited about the co-feature which sees Kohei Kubo (16-4-1, 11) fighting Hayato Kimura (20-5, 15) in what is potentially a firefight between two hard punching fighter who can both be hurt.
Although boxrec currently lists a bout between Hiroaki Teshigawara (8-1-1, 4) and Yuta Nakagawa (11-4-1, 7), a bout that is also shown n the poster, this contest is actually off, unfortunately. As a result the scheduled 8 bouts have been cut down to just 7.
The Tokyo show may not have the best fight of the day, but certainly has a very inte