July 05, 2014
Slick-punching and fast-moving Japanese Akio Shibata (23-8-1, 9 KOs), 160, kept his OPBF (Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation) and Japanese middleweight belt as he managed to earn a unanimous hard-fought decision (115-113, 116-112, 118-110) over Hikaru Nishida (10-7-1, 3 KOs), 160, over twelve sizzling rounds on Saturday in Tokyo, Japan. Having entirely lost his reputation with a second-round annihilation by ex-Olympic gold medalist Ryota Murata in his very pro debut, the OPBF ruler Shibata rebounded a little by acquiring a national belt by whipping Daisuke Nakagawa this March. The elongated footworker, six years his senior at 32, had a tough time coping with the slower but rugged challenger, but steadily piled up points with his favorite hit-rand-run tactics. Nishida monotonously went forward and tried to dig solid body shots to stop the champfs elusive mobility, which, however, didnft cease until the end.
Japanese #3 super-light Hayato Hokazono (18-4-1, 11 KOs) floored Osamu Hashimoto (9-7, 1 KO) with a smashing overhand right in round three and accelerated his attack en route to a well-timed halt with a towel-tossing at 1:27 of the sixth session in a scheduled eight.
Former Japanese 108-pound champ Ryoichi Taguchi (20-2-1, 8 KOs) came off the canvas in the second and battered hard-punching but quickly fading Filipino Florente Condes (27-9-1, 23 KOs), winning a close but unanimous nod (77-74 twice and 76-75) over eight. Condes, ex-IBF 105-pound champ, now lost four in last six bouts and revealed his lack of sufficient stamina since he was too often forced to the ropes by Taguchifs persistent retaliations. Without his second-round knockdown of Taguchi with a vicious left Condes would have been halted because of his lack of action thereafter.
Promoter: Watanabe Promotions.
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