This coming Sunday is a somewhat unusual day in that India becomes the focus for Asian boxing. Not only that but the country hosts 2 boxing shows on the same day, a real rarity.
Delhi Ruler Boxing Academy, Delhi, India
Of the two cards the more interesting appears to be a show from Delhi, which features some of the more notable Indian prospects.
One of the fighters on this card worthy of some attention is Sanjay Thapa (6-0, 3), who looks for his 7th win as he takes on novice Yash Malik (1-0). The 23 year old Thapa has been building a nice record for himself since his 2016 debut, but has yet to face anyone resembling a test and we suspect this will be another win over a very inexperienced novice. Malik on the other hand debuted in 2019 and took a decision win over a fellow debutant, and has been out of the ring since then. We suspect Thapa will be too good here, but it's nice to see someone building their record in India and hopefully he will land some more meaningful bouts in the future.
Another fighting looking to move to 7-0 on this show is Akashdeep Singh (6-0), with the feather fisted 26 year old taking on Suresh Pasham (1-0, 1). Singh made his debut in 2019, fought 4 times in 2019 and once last year. It seemed he was building plenty of momentum prior to 2020 and he'll want to kick start that again here. Pasham on the other hand made his debut in December 2020 scoring an opening round win and will be looking to build on that debut victory.
One other bout of note on this show is a 6 round match up between Sandeep Kumar (7-1-1, 4) and Arman (2-1, 1). Coming in to this Kumar is riding a 7 fight unbeaten rung, following an early career loss, but his competition has been awful and his opponents during his unbeaten run have a combined 2 wins. The 17 year old Arman was beaten last time out, but was matched rather hard for a novice, losing a close split decision to Rakesh Lohchab, and he could well be a banana skin for Kumar here.
Hilldale Matric School, Thinnanur Nadu, India
Despite thinking the show in Delhi is the better one, the other show, from Nadu, is also arguably a more competitive one.
In an 8 round bout we'll see 20 year old Mohd Azahar (2-3, 2) look to rebuild from back to back losses as he takes on the win-less Sediqi Wahedulla (0-2). We're not really sure why these two have been scheduled for 8 rounds, but it's clear that both men will feel this is a great chance to pick up a win against someone with no momentum and it could end up being a much more competitive bout than some of the ones in Delhi.
Another 8 rounder on this show will see the promising 25 year old Sachin Dekwal (9-0, 6) take on Kuldeep Singh (0-1), who had a draw on his debut in 2020. We think Dekwal has the potential to make a mark on the regional scene, though it's clear his competition will need to step up in the next year old two. Fingers crossed that when the world gets back to some sort of normality we get to see Dekwal face a test or two, rather than continue to rack up wins against novices at home.
A third bout of note on this show will be a female bout, as Urvashi Singh (7-2, 5) battles 20 year old novice Priyanshee Priyanshee (1-1). Although not a star Singh is a somewhat established fighter who has previously fought in Thailand and the Philippines and has got the potential to compete against decent fighters on the regional female scene. Sadly however Singh is going over old ground here, and she stopped Priyanshee last year, making us feel this is a bit of a meaningless re-run for a genuinely promising young Indian female fight.
The biggest of the two Japanese cards this coming Sunday takes place in Aichi and features a couple of interesting looking bouts.
One of those will see Japanese ranked Minimumweight Yuga Inoue (8-1-1, 1) take on Japanese ranked Flyweight Katsuya Murakami (8-1-1, 2) in a bout that looks really good on paper. The very skilled Inoue, who was stopped just over a year ago by Kai Ishizawa, is looking to build on his August win over Daiki Kameyama and will enter this bout as the slight favourite, despite being the naturally smaller man. Murakami is a lot less well known, and although he's on a 4 fight winning run since a 2016 loss to Kota Fujimoto, a win here would be the most notable of his career so far. We don't see this being a war, but it should be an excellent, competitive and technical match up.
The chief support bout will see Japanese based Filipino Jayar Estremos (11-16-1, 4) take on Shin Tomita (10-7-2), who has actually twice lost to Katsuya Murakami. Although Estremos has won only 1 bout since 2015 he is better than his record suggests, and he has regularly been matched very hard against much bigger men. The light punching Tomita has had some decent form in recent years, going 4-2 over the last 3 years, but this is a genuine step up in class, and we suspect Estremos's experience will be too much for Tomita.
As well as the event in Aichi there will also be a very low key card in Fukuoka, where we get a full show of 4 rounders, with 8 bouts scheduled for the card all of which will feature novices.
The main event on this card will be at Middleweight where Shuhei Hisatomi (2-1-1, 2) will take on Kanta Tokuzawa (0-0-1). The 23 year old Hisatomi debuted back in 2017 but has had a stop start career and this is his first bout in well over a year, whilst Tokuzawa will be returning to the ring after a technical draw on debut this past September. Although obvious a low level bout between novices, we do like seeing Japanese Middleweights, as their limitations tend to make for fun fights.
In a rather peculiar contest Majisuka Kosaka (3-2-1, 2) will face the win-less Keisuke Imabuchi (0-8-2). Kosaka debuted back in 2017 and has had mixed success whilst the 33 year old Imabuchi has failed to pick up a single victory since his April 2015 debut. This isn't a big bout, but it is certainly an interesting one and a chance for Imabuchi to finally get off the mark.
As well as the Japanese shows there will also be an Indian show. This card is mostly made up of novices, though it does also feature Sanjay Thapa (5-0, 2), who faces Pankaj Malik (0-1) in a clash of 21 year olds, and Akashdeep Singh (4-0), who takes on the debuting Hemant Gothwal (0-0).