Report, Photos by Joe Koizumi
Fast-improving Japanese speedster, WBO 105-pound champ Ryuya Yamanaka (16-2, 5 KOs) will risk his belt against #3 Filipino Vic Saludar (17-3, 10 KOs) in Kobe, Japan, on this coming Friday. They participated in a press conference with the WBO officials in attendance, as follows: referee Raul Caiz Jr. (US); judges Daniel Sandoval and Carlos Ortiz Jr. (both US) and Pinit Prayadsab (Thailand); supervisor Leon Panoncillo (US).
Yamanaka, making his second defense, said, “I’ll demonstrate my own boxing and successfully defend my belt without doubt.”
The highly regarded Saludar also confidently said, “I’ll win the belt for everybody of my mother country, Philippines.”
The Filipino once almost annexed the WBO belt from the then defending champ Kosei Tanaka—leading on points—before he collapsed with his vicious body shot in 2015. It will be an interesting matchup between the speedy boxer (Yamanaka) and the game hard-puncher (Saludar).