The Adachi Ward Sogo Sports Center in Tokyo, Japan played host to a double headliner this weekend featuring two world title contests. In one contest Naoko Shibata (13-3, 4 KO’s) defended the IBF light flyweight title for the second time against the WBF light flyweight champ Ana Arrazola (20-10-2, 13 KO’s). Shibata was comfortably ahead on the scorecards when she scored a ninth round TKO, her first stoppage win since 2010. It was a solid win for the champ as Arrazola was her most experienced opponent to date all around. Not only did she have more fights than all of Shibata’s prior opponents, but she had fought in a number of world title contests and had never been stopped. Shibata had fought twice for other world titles, but lost on both occasions before winning the IBF belt. She is also a two time OPBF light flyweight belt holder.
In the nights second world title bout, Momo Koseki (19-2-1, 6 KO’s) successfully defended the WBC atom-weight title, stopping Denise Castle in the eighth frame. Koseki had lost a bid for the WBC light flyweight belt early I her career, but in 2008 won the atom-weight crown and has held it ever since, racking up 14 defenses, winning 13 and drawing in one against Masae Akitaya in 2010. It’s no doubt that the U.K.’s Castle was in over her head; she took to the pro ranks just four months ago and entered this contest with only two fights and seven round of pro experience.
German welterweight Jennifer Retzke (15-1-1, 9 KO’s) added a third world title to her waist, winning the vacant IBO welterweight belt with a close 10 round split decision over Florence Muthoni (11-4-1, 5 KO’s) in Berlin, Germany. Retzke, the former IBF light middleweight champion, is also the current holder of the GBC light welterweight and welterweight titles and fought Muthoni to a draw exactly one year prior to her title winning contest this past weekend. Undefeated through her first 10 contests, Retzke won the German welterweight crown in her 10th outing. She followed that bout with a decision loss to Daniella Smith in her first world title opportunity but came back six months later to score a fifth round stoppage of Eva Halasi to win her first world belt: the IBF light middleweight title. She dropped down to the welterweight division next and over the following two years would win three world titles in two different weight classes.
Florence Muthoni lost her first two pro fights, but won her next eight which led to the first bout against Retzke for the vacant IBO welterweight title. After scoring a draw in that contest she lost to Svetlana Kulakova for the interim WBA light welterweight title, but won three fights over lower level opposition leading into the loss in her rematch with Retzke.
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