The boxing calendar traditionally slows to a halt at year end in the Western world, but in Japan the festivities surrounding New Year’s means fights to a lot of fans, and the boxing calendar is full.
Between December 29th and the 31st, there will be seven World title fights and though some of the matches are in the smaller weight-classes, there is a lot of high level talent on display as well.
The schedule is packed for December 31st.
The WBA Super World Champion in the Super Featherweight division, Takashi Uchiyama (23-0-1) takes on Nicaragua’s Oliver Flores (27-1-2) with his title on the line.
Uchiyama is expected to outclass Flores and remain the #1 ranked Super Featherweight in the World.
The fight takes place at the Ota-city gym in Tokyo and is promoted by Watanabe Productions.
That same card sees the WBA Light Flyweight title on the lines as champion Ryoichi Taguchi (22-2-1) faces the challenge of Colombia’s Luis De La Rosa (24-5-1).
De La Rosa has experience fighting in China so is used to a long trip, but he has gone (3-4) in his last seven fights, while Taguchi is making the third defense of his title.
In Nagoya WBO Strawweight Champion Kosei Tanaka (5-0), who is just 20 years old, defends his belt against Vic Saludar of the Philippines, who brings an (11-1) record to the table.
A third card at the EDION Arena in Osaka, Japan sees two additional world titles in play as WBA World Flyweight titlist Kazuto Ioka (18-1) faces the challenge of the experienced Argentine fighter Juan Carlos Reveco, who is (36-2).
The IBF Strawwight title is on the line as well as champion Katsunari Takayama (30-7) makes the third defense of his belt when he faces Jose Argumedo of Mexico, who is (15-3-1).
The calendar also sees Tokyo’s Ariake Colosseum hosting boxing on December 29th, and promoter Hideyuki Ohashi presents an eight fight card headlined by two more world title fights.
All-world WBO Super Flyweight champion Naoya Inoue (8-0) defends his belt against Warlito Parrenas (24-6-1) of the Philippines.
Inoue is just 22 years old but has been handled on a fast-track and is already a world champion who is #8 on the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board pound for pound rankings.
Inoue and Uchiyama are both the number one rated fighters in the world in their weight classes by the TBRB rankings, so the high-level talent is on display on the eve of New year’s in the Land of the Rising Sun.