EDION Arena Osaka, Osaka, Osaka, Japan
In Osaka we'll see a Shinsei promoted show, featuring all female bouts, something that they have done numerous times over the last few years. This one is particularly notable as it's set to be a triple header, with three title fights in total, two Japanese title fights and a regional title fight.
The regional title fight will see veteran fighter Yuko Henzan (8-11-4, 2) take on professional novice Aka Ringo (2-0, 1), who battle for the vacant WBO Asia Pacific Female Bantamweight title. The 27 year old Ringo only made her debut in April 2021 and her rise to title fights has been incredibly rapid, with a win over Henzan likely putting her on the verge of a world title fight. As for Henzan, she comes into this bout on the back of 4 straight losses, but gets a big chance to quieten a promising prospect and claim her second professional title, adding the WBO title to the OPBF title she won back in 2018 and vacated soon afterwards. Our preview of this one can be read here Ringo and Henzan face off for WBO regional throne
Staying at Bantamweight we'll also see the Japanese female Bantamweight champion Kanako Taniyama (4-1-1, 1) making her first defense, as she takes on Miki Mitsuda (5-7, 4), in a rematch between two women who clashed in a very close bout in 2020. The talented Taniyama won the title last June, in her 3rd shot at the belt, with a technical decision over Yuko Henzan, but sadly her career taken off in the way her and her team would have expected. In fact she's sadly not looked quite settled as a professional, despite being a very good kick boxer. As for Mitsuda this will be her first shot at a Bantamweight title, though she is a former Japanese female Featherweight champion and will likely feel her size and strength could be a difference maker here, especially given how close she pushed Taniyama in their first bout. Our in depth preview for this fight can be read here Taniyama seeks first defense as she takes on hard hitting Mitsuda
The second national title fight will see Kaoru Iga (5-2-1) and Natsuki Tarui (4-8-2) battle for the vacant Japanese Atomweight title. For Iga this will be her second title fight, following a loss in an OPBF female Light Flyweight title fight in 2021, and the 29 year old enters as the #1 ranked contender for the vacant title. She may have come up short in her previous title bout, but that will certainly be a loss that will give her confidence coming into this bout, especially given the fact this is her natural weight. As for Tarui the 30 year old will be getting her second shot at this very title, and despite losing her last two bouts, she has been competitive in a number of her losses. Tarui will go in as the under-dog but is a very, very live under-dog in this one. Our preview for this bout can be read here Iga and Tarui battle for vacant Japanese title
EDION Arena Osaka, Osaka, Osaka, Japan
This coming Wednesday we see attention turn to the the EDION Arena in Osaka for a show from Shinsei Gym, and it's a rare all female card with all 4 bouts on the card featuring fighters. They include a world champion in a non title bout, an OPBF title fight, an interesting debut and the third bout in the career of a very talented young fighter.
The main event will see WBO female Minimumweight champion Etsuko Tada (20-3-3, 7) battle in what is essentially a stay busy bout, as she takes on Sana Hazuki (8-5-1, 2) in an 8 rounder fought above the Minimumweight limit. Tada won the title in thrilling fashion last year, knocking out Ayaka Miyao in the 9th round of a brilliant fight last December, and it's a shame she's not defending it here, especially given that Hazuki is world ranked, albeit by the IBF, at the weight. As for Hazuki, she was last seen losing a wide decision to Yokasta Valle back in January, in an IBF title fight and given how easily she lost that one, she isn't expected to be a real test for Tada here.
In the title fight we see Yumi Narita (5-4-3, 1) clash with the once beaten Kaoru Iga (4-1-1) for the vacant OPBF Female Light Flyweight title. On paper this looks like a bout where Iga will be strongly favoured but in reality Narita is more tested, more proven and likely to be the fighter coming into the bout with more hunger, especially as most will be writing her off. Although we don't think either of these two are stars in the making their styles and hunger should gel to provide a bit of a treat at Oriental level. Our full preview of this one can be read here Narita and Iga battle for OPBF crown!
Former Japanese amateur standout Makoto Kikuchi (0-0) will be making her debut as she takes on Aka Ringo (1-0, 1) in a scheduled 6 rounder. Interestingly Kikuchi holds a JBC ranking coming into this bout, despite having never fought as a professional before, and it seems clear her team are going to be looking to move her very aggressively with title fights likely to come in the next year or two. The 34 year old debutant will likely be looking to secure a title fight if she can get past Ringo here. As for Ringo she's looking to build on a debut win in April, but this is a huge step up in class for her.
The only other bout on this card will see Sumire Yamanaka (2-0), the younger sister of former world champion Ryuya Yamanaka, take on Rin Murai (1-0-2) in an interesting looking 4 rounder. Yamanaka has shown herself to be a really talented boxer, but still a very young fighter and it could be a long, long time until we really see what she can do in the ring. Murai on the other hand is a 36 year old who's only win came more than 2 years ago, and it's going to be interesting if she can keep up with the much, much younger Yamanaka.