Courtesy of boxrec.com
When it comes to pound-for-pound conversations few can rival the pound-for-pound excitement given to us by Japanese warrior Akira Yaegashi (17-3, 9).
Yaegashi, a former WBA minimumweight champion and the current WBC Flyweight champion is one of the fighters that we watch and always expect an enthralling contest from. Be it his FOTY style war with Pornsawan Porpramook, his narrow defeat to Kazuto Ioka or his bloody victory over Toshiyuki Igarashi it appears Yaegashi just makes every fight fun.
After the run Yaegashi has been on in recent years, including the 3 fights mentioned above as well as 4 hard Japanese title fights it's fair to suggest he's one of the few fighters who does deserve an "easy one". It appears that he'll be getting that easy one in the first defense of his WBC Flyweight title.
Yaegashi's first challenger since he claimed the title from Igarashi will be Mexican veteran Oscar Blanquet (32-5-1, 23), a fighter who has an impressive looking record though one that is more style than substance.
Typically when a fighter has more than 30 victories from 38 bouts and has been a professional for 10 years you'd expect them to have mixed with fringe world level opponents. To date Blanquet has only really faced 2 "names" of note, Ricardo Nunez who stopped Blanquet in 7 rounds and Wilbert Uicab who took a majority decision over Blanquet.
Blanquet's problem so far in his career is that he's spent most of it fighting limited opponents, effectively padding his record with out ever developing the skills and experiences needed to move up through the levels.
The best victory on the Mexican's record is over Warlito Parrenas, better known as Wars Katsumata. The victory over Parrenas came just last year in Blanquet's only previous bout in Japan and whilst his record over in Japan is 1-0 (1) there is a gulf of difference between Parrenas and Yaegashi.
In terms of Blanquet as a fight he's wild with his offensive work and defensively he's not the most intelligent. His shots are often wild and looping and he's there to be countered by a good fighter. Although his defense is weak he has seemed rather tough so far and has only suffered 2 stoppage losses, with only one of those occurring in the last 7 years.
The champion, who is pure excitement bottled in to a 5'3" frame, his defense is generally under-rated though when needed to be defense he can be, as he showed in his battle with Eagle Den Junlaphan where his toughness was also shown. The reason his defense is so under-rated is because his main defense is in fact his own offense. He's none stop action who hits harder than his record shows and refuses to let an opponent off the hook if he has them hurt.
No single shot from Yaegashi will stop an opponent though he cumulative effect of blows will wear fighters down both physically and mentally. He's smart with his shots and they are often accurate and sharp and he finds his way into range with alarming easy despite being relatively short.
Although not a a super skilled and slippery fighter Yaegashi is a nightmare for anyone at 112lbs whilst Blanquet is little more than a contender in a multi-title era. It really shouldn't be competitive unless Yaegashi has slipped massively since his victory over Igarashi.
With the toughness of the challenger it wouldn't a surprise for him to go the distance though he'll certainly look like he's been on the losing end of a fight after the 12 rounds.
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