Inoue stops Ratchasi to win OPBF, WBO ASPAC 154lb belts

By Joe Koizumi
Photos by Naoki Fukuda

Unbeaten Japanese 154-pound champ, IBF#15/WBO#15 Takeshi Inoue (12-0-1, 7 KOs), 154, impressively gained the OPBF super-welter belt as well as the vacant WBO Asia Pacific title when he overpowered the current OPBF ruler Ratchasi Sithsaithong (12-5, 8 KOs), 152.75, all the way and finally decked him twice en route to a fine TKO victory at 2:51 of the eighth session on Friday in Tokyo, Japan.

Inoue, a sturdy body puncher, took the initiative with his superior power and hurt the Thailander with persistent body shots, leading on points after the fourth—40-46 twice and 39-37. Ratchasi, who had dethroned Japan’s Yutaka Oishi to win the OPBF throne via come-from-behind twelfth-round TKO last April, was durable enough to withstand Inoue’s continual assault. Finally, however, did Inoue catch up with him with merciless body bombardments, dropping him twice to score a well-received stoppage.

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