Sambo Hall, Kobe, Hyogo, Japan
The main show this coming Sunday takes place in Kobe and is a Shinsei promoted card that very much focuses on the Japan Vs Philippines rivalry, with 3 bouts between fighters from the two countries.
The main event will see Japanese ranked Super Flyweight Tetsuro Ohashi (8-3-1, 2) take on the under-rated Roland Jay Biendima (17-11-1, 10), in what could be a potential banana skin for Ohashi. The talented Japanese fighter is looking to bounce back from a loss to WBO Asia Pacific Bantamweight champion Ryosuke Nishida last November. Ohashi is a real talent, but his lack of power has held him back from reaching the next level, and we do worry that he is close to, if not at, his ceiling. As for Biendima he did recently go through a 6 fight losing run, between 2020 and the start of this year, but comes into this on the back of two stoppage wins. At his best, Biendima is a hard hitting tough guy, and he could well be the type of guy who has the tools to get to, and break down, the more skilled Ohashi.
Another Filipino puncher on this card will be Jon Jon Estrada (15-9-1, 14), who will favoured to pick up a win here as he takes on limited Japanese fighter Yushi Fujita (9-9-4, 2). Estrada is a flawed fighter, really flawed, but he has brutal power, and if a fighter tries to have a tear up with him, he can catch them, and close the show on them. Notably he can be out boxed, though fighters do, generally, need to be wary of his power and find ways to either avoid it completely, or neutralise it. As for Fujita he lacks power, but is better than his record suggests, and has been a solid test for decent domestic fighters, such as Jinki Maeda who had to work for a win over Fujita last year. Estrada should be favoured, but Fujita could make this a tough day for him.
For us the best match up on the card will see OPBF ranked Filipino Cris Ganoza (19-4, 9) take on Japanese novice Goki Kobayashi (3-0, 2). The 28 year old Ganoza was blasted out in his most recent fight, by Yudai Shigeoka, but has only been beaten by solid fighters, with Shigeoka, Edward Heno, ArAr Andales and John Michael Zulueta beating him. He is certainly no push over. As for Kobayashi the 23 year old looks like a genuine prospect to keep an eye on and a blow out win over Sora Takeda back in March was a statement that he has got power and can go a long way. We suspect he has the tools to over-come Ganoza, but we also feel he will have to work for a win here and he will be forced to answer a number of questions about his potential. A really good match up and a good sign of the belief Shinsei have in Kobayashi.
Capio, Tsukuba, Ibaragi, Japan
As well as the card in Kobe we're also set to get a show in Ibaragi, though this show is much less notable and is an all 4 rounder show. These types of shows lack stars, or notable hopefuls, but do tend to deliver fun action and this 7 bout card should be a really fun one, with 4 all debutant bouts.
The one bout from the 7 we're most interested in is a bout at a contracted 50KG's between Yuki Hayato (0-0) and Tomoya Sasamoto (0-0), who are both youngsters looking to kick their careers off with a win. Hayato is a 23 year old whilst Sasamoto is a little younger at 22. Given their ages we expect to see both men continue their careers, and hopefully we'll see both men looking to leave an impression here.
Central Gym, Kobe, Hyogo, Japan
This coming Sunday attention turns to Kobe, for the return of a former world champion, and several notable domestic scraps.
The main event of the card is the long awaited return to the ring of former WBO Minimumweight champion Ryuya Yamanaka (16-3, 5), who retired after losing the WBO title to Vic Saludar back in 2018. Yamanaka suffered a brain bleed in that bout, and it was assumed his career was over until the boxing bug bit Yamanaka, an the JBC also changed their rules. He and his team have clearly taken his long lay off and health situation in mind when match him here, as he'll be in a 6 rounder against the limited and light punching Daisuke Sudo (7-8-3), in what should be an emotional night for Yamanaka, and a really interesting assignment for him, given the issues he's been through. As for Sudo, he's better than his record suggests, and did go 8 rounds with the hard hitting Kento Hatanakaa last year, but will be regarded as a safe comeback opponent for Yamanaka.
Arguably the most interesting bout on the show takes place at 105lbs, as the talented Goki Kobayashi (2-0, 1) takes on Sora Takeda (6-3, 1) in a really good 8 rounder, in the middle of the card. Kobayashi debuted less than a year ago, and is already moving into 8 rounders, but has already shown enough to be excited by, and he clearly has the potential to be mixing in title level bouts in the next 12 to 24 months. He's incredibly promising. Takeda on the other hand has proven to be a solid domestic level fighter, winning Rookie of the Year in 2018 and giving Katsuki Mori a good, competitive, and exciting bout in 2021. Kobayashi should be too good, but Takeda will not be in the ring to just roll over, and is a genuine potential banana skin here.
Also in the middle of the card we'll see the out of form Arashi Iimi (7-4, 7) take on JBC ranked Yuna Hara (10-2-1, 5). Iimi started his career really well, winning his first 4 and reaching the 2017 All Japan Rookie of the Year final, but has since gone 3-4. He's limited, he has questionable durability, but he can also punch, and 5 of his wins have come in the first 2 rounds, showing he's dangerous early on. Sadly for him however he has been stopped 3 times and has lost his last 3. As for Hara he has been brought through quite softly to be honest, but managed to get some good rounds, get some experience and has won his last 4 to earn a Japanese ranking at 130lbs. Iimi can certainly punch hard enough to hurt Hara, but Hara should be the favourite with his more accomplished skillset.
Another fight with a Japanese fighter will see Shion Tamada (6-4, 3) take on JBC ranked Bantamweight Yuki Yonaha (10-3-1, 7) in another scheduled 8 rounder. The 25 year old Tamada has got some skills, but has lost 3 of his last 6, and has shown a lack of real toughness and stamina in some of those bouts. He clearly has something to work with, despite his record, but we can't help feeling he's missing too many things to go far, including confidence in himself. As for Yonaha he's a 31 year old who was tipped for big things but has had some stumbles in his most notable bouts. Despite his slip ups he does seem to be finding something of a groove recently, having won his last 3 and is expected to continue that run here, likely doing so in comprehensive fashion
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
The most noteworthy action this coming Saturday is a Japanese national title fight at Korakuen Hall, which will headline this month's Dynamic Glove.
That title bout is the rescheduled bout between Rikito Shiba (5-1, 3) and Shokichi Iwata (6-0, 4), for the Japanese Light Flyweight title. This was supposed to take place back in September, before Iwata tested positive for Covid at the weigh in forcing the bout to be scrapped at the 11th hour. Given how we've seen Covid effecting fighters this could be a case of Iwata rushing back to soon, given his illness. Ignoring the Covid situation the bout is a mouth watering one, between two young fighters each looking to boost their careers and really move on to the next level. Our in depth preview of this one can be read here Iwata and Shiba clash for Japanese title!
In a really good supporting bout we'll see novice professional Goki Kobayashi (1-0, 1) take on Hayato Aoki (4-1, 3), in what could be a really interesting match up. Kobayashi was a solid amateur, and looked very good in his debut in June, but we suspect that Aoki will look to drag him into a fire fight here, and we could get something a big explosive if Aoki can start fast.
Workpoint Studio, Bang Phun, Thailand
Over in thailand we get the next show under the WP Boxing series of shows, and it's headlined by one of Thailand best young prospects, taking on someone who has long been a gatekeeper to the regional scene.
The prospect in question is Thattana Luangphon (14-0-1, 12), aka Chainoi Worawut, who will be looking to defend his WBC Asian Boxing Council Super Bantamweight title. In the opposite corner to the unbeaten puncher will be Sukpraserd Ponpitak (27-12, 19), , who also fights as Sukkasem Kietyongyuth. Chainoi is regarded as one of the best prospects in Thailand, with nasty power, good skills, and a developing boxing brain, which could see him landing regional level fights in 2022, when Covid restrictions are finally lifted. Sukkasem on the other hand is known for once being a decent fighter, but is now a tune for many in Asia, including future Naoya Inoue opponent Aran Dipaen and current OPBF champion Keita Kurihara among others.
Halyk arena sport complex, Aktau, Kazakhstan
In Aktau we'll see a number of Kazakh hopefuls in action, though sadly the opponents really aren't the most testing and the match ups seem rather predictable, though it's better to see the hopefuls fighter rather than sat, twiddling their thumbs and waiting for interesting opponents to be available.
One of the prospects is Light Heavyweight Bekzad Nurdauletov (2-0, 1), an amateur standout tipped for really big things. He'll be up against Russian based Uzbekistani fighter Farrukh Juraev (6-4-1, 2). Notably Juraev has has never been stopped, and should take Nurdaletov the scheduled 8 rounds, but he is a natural Middleweight and he hasn't really shown much in terms of a being a threat against novices so far, and that includes novices without the amateur pedigree of the Kazakh.
Another notable unbeaten on this card is Meiirim Nursultanov (14-0, 8), who has been in an around the fringes of a world rankings for a whilst. The unbeaten Nursultanov is a 28 year old who looked set to break out after a very strong 2019, but has lost a lot of momentum here. Thankfully for him he shouldn't be tested too much here as he takes on the very limited Dzmitry Atrokhau (16-11, 7), from Belarus. Atrokhau is a 33 year old Southpaw who has been a professional since 2013 and despite picking up a lot of loses he is very much a survival expert, with his sole stoppage loss coming when his team threw in the towel against Andrii Velikovskyi. This should be a great chance for Nursultanov to get some ring time and shake some ring rust, but it would be a huge shock if the bout was at all competitive.
TMMA San-Chong Gym, Taipei, Taiwan
We also get a small card in Taiwan, with a few local fighters facing off. The most notable of which will see the unbeaten Ching Hsin Wang (2-0-1) face off with Chian Huei Chin (0-1-1), in a second bout between the two ladies. These two fought to a draw in 2019, and Wang hasn't fought since then, so will be coming in with more than 2 years of inactivity. Chin has fought since that draw, but has been inactive since November 2019, and has almost 2 years of inactivity herself.
This coming Saturday looked like it could be an interesting one for fans of Asian fighters, though sadly a number of bouts being cancelled turned what was a good looking weekend into a pretty ordinary one. Despite that we do still have quite a few fights to look forward to.
Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
With the planned IBF Flyweight title bout between Sunny Edwards (16-0, 4) and Jayson Mama (16-0, 9) falling through in the middle of the week the real focus for us is Tokyo, ad we get the latest show in the Dynamic Glove series of shows. This card features a Japanese title fight, a Japanese title eliminator and an interesting test for a novice professional.
The main event is the aforementioned title bout, which will see the once beaten Rikito Shiba (5-1, 3) clash with the touted Shokichi Iwata (6-0, 4) for the vacant Japanese Light Flyweight title. The title became vacant a few weeks ago when Masamichi Yabuki, the one man to have beaten Shiba, vacated it to focus on his up coming WBC world title fight with Kenshiro Teraji and we've been left with this really interesting match up as a result. Of the two men Shiba is the slightly more proven as a professional, having scored the better wins and shared the ring with Yabuki, but Iwata has long been seen as a special talent following a very good run in the unpaid ranks, and he will enter as the favourite here. Despite the fact both men have only got 6 bouts to their name both are regarded highly, both were solid amateurs and both will be feeling they have the tools to not just win the Japanese title but to go much, much further in the coming years. Our in depth preview of this bout can be read here Iwata and Shiba clash for Japanese title!
In the chief support bout we'll see former Japanese Welterweight champion Yuki Nagano (18-3, 14) take on former WBO Asia Pacific champion Yuki Beppu (21-2-1, 20) in a rematch of a clash the men had in 2018, when Nagano gave Beppu his first loss. Since their first bout both men went on the achieve their biggest success, with both winning titles, but both half also suffered recent stoppage losses and it's probably fair to say that neither man is quite the same fight that they were when they first faced off. We expect bombs to be thrown here, though it's a very, very hard bout to predict. Notably the winner of this will land a Japanese Welterweight title fight at the 2022 edition of the Champion Carnival.
The third bout of note on this card will see Goki Kobayashi (1-0, 1) take on Hayato Aoki (4-1, 3) in a very, very interesting match up. Kobayashi made his debut earlier this year, stopping the 2020 All Japan Rookie of the Year runner up Hyogo Kimura. The hope is that he can be moved incredibly quickly, and taking on Aoki this early in his career is a good chance for him to prove himself. Aoki on the other hand will be desperate to rebuild following his first loss, which came this past June.
As well the action in Japan we'll also see a number of Central Asian hopefuls in action in action in Russia.
One of the Asian fighters on this card is once beaten Kazakh fighter Stanislav Kalitskiy (11-1, 4), who takes on unbeaten Russian foe Ruslan Kamilov (10-0-1, 5). The 24 year old Kalitskiy was beaten 2 fights ago, but bounced back in March this year when he stopped Dmitrii Khasiev, and he will be looking to add another win here as he looks to get his career back on track. Whilst Kalitskiy is coming in on the back of a good win Kamilov is on a string of them, including a stoppage win over former world title challenger Evgeny Chuprakov back in March.
Unbeaten Tajik hopeful Asror Vokhidov (9-0, 5) will be looking for his 10th successive win as he takes on Mukhammad Shekhov (9-0-1, 3). This is a really well matched bout, and whilst neither man is heading towards a world title fight any time soon, this should still be a very, very interesting one.
Another Tajik fighter on this card is world ranked Super Featherweight Muhammadkhuja Yaqubov (17-0, 9), who will be looking to defend his WBC International Super Featherweight title against Cristian Palma (31-10-2, 7). The talented Yaqubov is banging on the door of a world title fight, and is being matched relatively softly here in what looks like a bit of a stay busy bout rather than a genuine test. Palma, from Chile, is experienced but shouldn't be any sort of a problem here for the talented Tajik.
This coming Monday is a really great day for fight fans wanting to watch some Japanese action with two free shows being made available through the promoters YouTube channel.
Amagasaki Cultural Center, Amagasaki, Hyogo, Japan
The more notable the shows will be streamed on the Boxing Real YouTube channel, and it's a pretty interesting show overall, even if it lacks major names.
The main event will see once touted prospect Rikito Shiba (4-1, 2) return to the ring for the first time since being stopped in a Japanese Light Flyweight title fight by Masamichi Yabuki, back in December 2019. The talented 25 year old will be dipping his toes at Flyweight as he takes on the experienced Hideyuki Watanabe (8-13-3, 6). On paper this is a clear mismatch, but given Shiba's confidence destroying loss to Yabuki, the 18 month lay off and the move up in weight it might not be the foregone conclusion that it looks. Watanabe, although no world beater, is a 36 year old veteran who has ran some solid domestic fighters very close in a number of his losses, including Takuya Kogawa, Naoki Mochizuki, Ryuto Oho and Yusuke Sakashita, giving him one of the most misleading records in the sport. Watanabe is expected to lose, but we expect him to give Chiba a genuine test.
The brilliantly named Condor Inaba (7-5-1, 3) looks to make a successful return to the ring himself, following a lengthy lay off, as he takes on light punching Yuga Inoue (10-2-1, 1). Inaba hasn't fought since October 2019, and although not a star in the making the 26 year old will be desperate to pick up his next win and get back on track. In the opposite corner is Inoue, no relation to Naoya and Takuma, who won the All Japan Rookie of the Year in 2017 but came undone against Kai Ishizawa and has moved through the weights ever since. Inoue is the more talented fighter, but we do worry for him here as he will be giving away quite a bit of size to Inaba.
Potentially the hidden gem on this show will see Hibiki Jogo (10-3, 5) take on Wataru Ikegami (8-5-1, 5). It's fair to say that international fans will not be too aware of these two men, but both are fan friendly fighters, who are happy to let their shots go, and their styles should gel really well. Jogo is a 27 year old who was last seen losing in a competitive bout to Tatsuya Takahashi and although not the biggest or strongest fighter he does have the desire to be involved in exciting contests. Ikegami on the other hand is one of the most under-rated fighters in the sport, with an eye pleasing aggressive style. He seemed to find his groove last time out, against Shion Tamada, and he'll want to build on that performance, which was genuinely very impressive. This one really could be a show stealer.
One other bout worthy of some attention will see Hyogo Kimura (6-2-1, 1), who lost in the All Japan final of the Rookie of the Year back in February, taking on the debuting Goki Kobayashi (0-0). Kimura was unfortunate in the Rookie of the Year, and his bout with Ryota Karimata was one of the best bouts on the show. He proved himself to be tough, skilled, and at 20 years old incredibly promising. Kobayashi on the other hand is a 22 year old debutant who fought more than 30 bouts as an amateur and picked up more than 20 wins. Hard to know much about how good Kobayashi is, but in all honest we're glad to see more of Kimura.
Arena Tachikawa Tachihi , Tachikawa, Tokyo, Japan
The other Japanese show will come from Tachikawa, and is also expected to be live streamed on the promoters YouTube channel. This is a much smaller show, but is a good example of a Japanese style "small hall" show. None of the bouts are high profile, or feature anyone with exceptionally high ceilings, but the contests should be well matched competitive bouts.
The main event will be a rematch between Shinnosuke Saito (8-3, 2) and Hokuto Matsumoto (6-4, 1), who battled late last year in a very competitive 8 rounder. Last time around Saito took a razor thin split decision and we expect a super close bout again here. Coming in to this Saito is riding a 5 fight winning run and certainly has some momentum on his side, whilst Matsumoto is struggling for form with just a single win in his last 4, however given how competitive their first bout Matsumoto will come into this believing he can pick up the win.
In the chief support bout the light punching Yoshiki Yamashita (7-3) will be up against the JBC ranked Hizuki Saso (12-7-2, 4). Coming in to this Yamashita does have some momentum, having won 3 of his last 4, and the 23 year old will know that a win here would put him on the domestic map and help him secure a JBC ranking. As for Saso this will be his first fight since being stopped by Masataka Taniguchi, in what was a Japanese title fight last year. Whilst this is not a huge bout, we do expect it to be a very competitive one.
Another former Japanese title challenger on this show is Ryuji Ikeda (14-7-3, 9), who is in dire need of a win having gone 1-3-1 in his last 5. Whilst Ikeda is a former Japanese title challenger he will probably be the under-dog here, as he takes on the heavy handed Hayato Ono (8-4, 8). Kato is a stop or be stopped fighter, and he will be looking to bomb out Ikeda and get his own career back on track. We are not expecting high level boxing here and we're also not expecting the judges to be needed.
One final bout worthy of note for those tuning in is a match up between Dominique Kenshin (5-2, 2) and Shogo Sakai (7-6-3, 5). Kenshin reached the East Japan Rookie of the Year final last year, and whilst not a great fighter the 20 year old has got ambitions to compete at the domestic title scene. He is a crude heavy handed, and chinny fighter so his fights are always worth tuning in to. Sakai is also heavy handed, but hasn't been seen in the ring since 2017, and now aged 32 he can ill afford any more set backs with his career.
The One Boxing Stadium, Seoul, South Korea
As well as the action in Japan we're also set to get a small show in South Korea. The main event here will see Kook Min Moon (7-1-1, 5) battle against Tae Sun Kim (5-1-1, 2) for the KBM Super Featherweight title. For both men this is a huge opportunity to win their first title, though it feels like it's a bigger chance for the 21 year old Moon who is more active than Kim and appears to be the man with more ambition in the sport. Saying that however a win for Kim would see him being given a massive boost and potentially begin his move towards bigger and better international fights.