The past 7 days haven’t been the most action packed for fight fans, but there has been enough action to keep the juices flowing until some bigger, more notable bouts.
The first of the bouts of note occurred on Wednesday when Ryuichi Funai (27-7, 19) stopped old High School friend Kenta Nakagawa (13-3-1, 9) in 7 rounds to claim the Japanese Super Flyweight title. The bout, a mandatory title defense for Nakagawa, was competitive in the first 5 rounds but Nakagawa was slightly behind heading into the second half of the bout. Being behind seemed to force Nakagawa to step up his output but sadly that came at a cost and he looked exhausted before being dropped, and stopped, near the end of round 7.
The win for Funai sees the Watanabe gym netting another big win with Funai joining Nihito Arakawa, Yusaku Kuga and Hiroto Kyoguchi as new champions.
On Thursday attention turned to the US as Kazakh prospect Aidos Yerbossynuly (5-0, 5) made his US debut. The talented Kazakh made light work of Riarus Dudley (5-2-1, 2), stopping him in the second round to extend his perfect unbeaten start.
Although the week in general was quiet the weekend was more action packed, thanks in part to a show in Singapore which featured two fast rising Uzbek hopefuls.
The first of those Uzbek’s was unbeaten Middleweight Azizbek Abdugofurov (6-0, 4), who took a wide decision over Argentinian wild man Martin Fidel Rios (21-11-4, 11). Rios,who had a real foul filled bout with Jamie Cox last year, looked like a tough assignment on paper but the Uzbek was too good, too quick and too strong for Rios who struggled to ever make in roads. Whilst this was a second straight decision win for Abdugofurov it’s clear he’s heavy handed and is quickly moving through the rankings to major title bouts.
The other Uzbek was the heavy handed puncher Qudratillo Abduqaxorov (11-0, 8), who scored a break out win by blowing away Charles Manyuchi (20-3-1, 12) inside a round. Manyuchi tried to clown with the Uzbek but that proved to be a mistake with Abduqaxorov landing power shots whilst Manyuchi dropped his hands, and within a round the Zimbabwean fighter had been stopped. The win saw Abduqaxorov claim the WBC “Silver” Welterweight title and move towards a potential WBC world title fight at 147lbs.
On the same card fans saw Indonesian Daud Yordan (37-3-0-1, 25) score a 2nd wound win over Thai teenager Campee Phayom (11-3, 7). Campee had come in with a bit of momentum but had no way of coping with Yordan’s power and the Indonesian has now won 7 in a row and moved towards a another potential world title fight. Also notching a win on this card was Filipino Jeson Umbal (14-5, 9), who took a 10 round split decision win over Fadhili Majiha (20-8-4, 9) to continue his current winning run.
The weekend ended with a Morioka show in Japan headlined by super talented Japanese youngster Hinata Maruta (5-0, 4). The unbeaten Maruta defended his WBC Youth Bantamweight title by stopping Indonesian Hamson Tiger Lamandau (8-1, 5) in the 7th round with some devastating body shots. The win for Maruta saw him prove he was well above “Youth” title and he’s now set to turn his attention to the Japanese and OPBF titles, showing his hunger for bigger and better things.
(Scott Graveson covers the Asian boxing scene for www.asianboxing.info)