March 11h 2016-Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Akio Shibata (27-8-1, 13) Vs Hikaru Nishida (14-7-1, 6) II
The firs of the 2016 Champion Carnival bouts took place his past Friday and saw the OPBF and JBC Middleweights up for grabs as unified champion Akio Shibata [柴田 明雄] battled mandatory challenger Hikaru Nishida [西田 光].
April 22nd 2008- Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Akio Shibata (9-4-1, 5) Vs Kazuhiko Hidaka (26-5, 18)
Today Akio Shibata is one of the more well known Japanese fighters in the Middleweight division. Around 7 years ago however he was a Light Middleweight trying to make a name for himself. In Shibata's first title bout he took on the then OPBF Light Middleweight champion Kazuhiko Hidaka, a hard hitting fighter who had previously claimed the OPBF Welterweight title before moving toe 154lbs and defeating Yuki Nonaka for the title there.
August 25th 2015- Ariake Colosseum, Tokyo, Japan
Ryota Murata (0-0) Vs Akio Shibata (21-7-1, 9)
In boxing it can help to make a statement on your debut. One man who certainly did that was Ryota Murata who began his professional career by fighting against OPBF Middleweight champion Akio Shibata. On paper it was one of the riskiest debuts in history and put the Japanese Olympic gold medal winner under a lot of pressure in what a major day for television channel Fuji TV, who also aired Naoya Inoue's Japanese title bout with Ryoichi Taguchi on the same broadcast
December 6th 2014- Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Akio Shibata (23-8-1, 9) Vs Makoto Fuchigami (21-9, 12) II
In May 2013 Japanese fans saw Akio Shibata move from Light Middleweight to Middleweight and score a 9th round technical decision win over Makoto Fuchigami to claim the OPBF Middleweight title. A little over 19 months later the two fought for the second time with Shibata entering the bout as the unified OPBF and Japanese Middleweight champion and with Fuchigami needing a win to really keep his career alive
Japanese fighter Akio Shibata is one of the sports most over-looked fighters by those outside of his home land of Japan. Sadly for most fight fans he is better remembered for his loss to a debuting Ryota Murata than anything else he has done in the ring. Sadly that lasting memory of his loss to Murata overshadows a career which has seen him becoming a unified OPBF and Japanese champion at both Light Middleweight and Middleweight. In fact that one loss seems to over-shadow a career which has seen him score numerous solid wins over the likes of Yuki Nonaka, Daisuke Nakagawa, Yoshihisa Tonimura, Makoto Fuchigami and Takayuki Hosokawa.
Sadly footage of some of those bouts is scarce though we have managed to hunt down the the full fight between Shibata and Hosokawa which, for those who haven't seen it, is here. We know we've given away the winner but the bout it's self is a clever boxing contest between two fighters who base their fight on their speed and jab. This isn't a slug fest, though there are moments, but it is a very interesting and entertaining contest as Shibata retains the Japanese Light Middleweight title.
(Video courtesy of gentidori)
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