WBA #4 Takada barely keeps Japanese 105lb belt

By Joe Koizumi
Photos by Naoki Fukuda

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Champ Takada floors fast-moving challenger Isa.

WBA#4 Yuni Takada (14-8-3, 6 KOs), 105, was a huge prefight favorite due to his latest surge, but had a very tough time coping with fleet-footed speedster JBC#1 Shunsuke Isa (13-6-1, 2 KOs), 105, and managed to keep his Japanese minimum belt by a unanimous decision (96-92 twice, 97-91) over ten speedy rounds on Friday in Tokyo, Japan. After the fifth, the open scoring system indicated Takada widely leading on points: all 49-46 in his favor. Takada, handled by three-time world 140lb challenger Lion Furuyama, decked the soft-punching challenger with a solid right in round six. But it was Isa that amazingly displayed a last surge, battered the champ and dropped him with a furious combination in the closing seconds of the final tenth. The champ Takada was barely saved by the bell that came to his rescue. Isa deserves a rematch.

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Challenger Ohata often countered champ Watanabe.

Prospect Kai Watanabe (12-1-1, 6 KOs), 130, barely retained his Japanese youth super feather belt as he was awarded a controversial majority decision (77-75 twice, 76-76) over previously unbeaten Shunpei Ohata (2-1, 1 KO), 129.75, over eight see-saw rounds. Ohata, whose amateur mark was 29-13, displayed good circling and well-timed counters to fully frustrate the top dog Kai, who only occasionally scored with sporadic left-right combinations. We wish to see their rematch since Ohata demonstrated such a good performance.

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Honda, a future champ, scores with a sharp right shot.

This reporter found a very good talent in a lightweight six-footer Shunsuke Honda (3-0, 1 KO), 134.5, who defeated Itsuki Ikegami (3-4-1, 1 KO), 134.75, over four. Honda, who had scored an amateur mark of 6-1, showed a good upright style and sharp one-two combinations to impress the ringsiders at the Hall. If well cultivated, the lanky sharpshooter may become a Japanese version of Robert Easter Jr. He looked very promising if he has a good chin.

Promoter: Hachioji Nakaya Promotions.


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  • Those are some tremendous photos. Thank you. I will try to find this fight. Sounds exciting.

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