Ioka stops Tanaka, keeps WBO 115lb belt

By Joe Koizumi

In a greatly anticipated encounter of Japanese compatriots, WBO junior bantamweight champ Kazuto Ioka (26-2, 15 KOs), 115, very impressively kept his belt as he sent previously unbeaten Kosei Tanaka (15-1, 9 KOs), 115, to the deck twice with a well-timed left hook in the fifth and sixth and finally halted him at 1:35 of the eighth round on Thursday in Tokyo, Japan. It was a beautiful demonstration of Ioka’s skills in averting Tanaka’s opening attacks and precisely counterpunching him with the picture-perfect left hooks. The ref was Michiaki Someya, Japan, who made a well-timed stoppage to save the battered and bloodied loser from further punishment.

Former WBC flyweight ruler Daigo Higa (17-1-1, 17 KOs), 118, wrested the WBO Asia Pacific bantamweight belt by flattening defending titlist, compatriot Yuki Strong Kobayashi (16-9, 9 KOs), 117.5, at 0:45 of the fifth session in a scheduled twelve. Higa had swept all rounds prior to the trick happening with his vicious uppercut to the face.

(More to come)

Interview: Franchón Crews-Dezurn
Jake Paul rips brother's exhibition with Floyd

Top Boxing News

PLEASE READ
We have a few rules to make our comment section more enjoyable for everyone.
1. Keep comments related to boxing.
2. Be respectful, polite and keep it clean.
3. Personal attacks will not be tolerated.
Offending posts will be removed.
Repeat offenders will be put on moderation.
  • Not a bad fight card. Main event was a very fight. Weird seeing a fight this early and on Boxnation. Good action from the main event. Tanaka was my pick but tge man with the better opposition on the record did the job.

  • Wasn’t surprised he won, was hoping he would, but I was surprised at the knockout. Tanaka absolutely could not see that left hook coming the entire fight.

    Estrada and Gonzalez fight in March and Rungvisai probably gets the winner — which is fine he’s beaten them both — but if he doesn’t feel like sitting out until July/August, after last fighting in October (and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Chocolatito were to retire if he won), Ioka – Rungvisai is a helluva fight in my opinion. Otherwise, Jerwin Ancajas took the year off, I’m sure he’s eager to get back in there. Well done Ioka!

  • Ioka might go up to 118 and fight Inoue, otherwise he got many options, being one of them a rematch with Donnie Nietes. Also a fight with Jerwin Ancajas could be great.

  • >
    %d bloggers like this: