YAMANAKA KEEPS WBC 118LB BELT


October 22, 2014

TOKYO, JAPAN

WBC bantamweight champ, unbeaten southpaw Japanese Shinsuke Yamanaka (22-0-2, 16 KOs) (right), 118, successfully kept his belt as he floored official challenger Suriyan Sor Rungvisai (37-6-1, 16 KOs) (left), 117.25, from Thailand, three times en route to a unanimous decision over twelve hard-fought rounds. Yamanaka, making his seventh defense, failed to extend his KO streak to six, but displayed his superiority in exchanging hot rallies, dropping the game and gallant Thailander in the seventh, eighth and ninth sessions.

The official tallies were as follows: David Sutherland (US) 116-108, Jack Woodburn (Canada) 115-109 and Malcolm Bulner (Australia) 114-110, all in favor of the defending titlist. The referee was Laurence Cole (US).

Suriyan, a shorter Thailander, said before the fight, gWe, of Nakhonluang Promotion gym, possess a special knowhow to cope with a southpaw opponent.h It might be true, as he made good use of lead rights to the lefty champ as if his right hand served well as a leading left. Suriyan, seven years his junior at 25, was in command in the first three sessions with his opening attack, which had the champ respect the challengerfs willingness as well as his head coming in first. Yamanaka, an upright stylist, kept moving with his guard high, and kept his distance to avert Suriyanfs infighting. The champ maintained his composure and was in command with a sharp southpaw left effectively shaking him up midway in round four.

After the fourth, the open scoring system indicated that Suriya was slightly leading on points: 38-38 twice and 39-37 for Thai the challenger.

Vigorously moving in all the way, Suriyan remained an aggressor but Yamanaka made a good judgment of distance and his precision improved as the contest progressed. Circling like a matador, the champ, in round seven, landed a well-timed left-right-left combination to the face of the game Thailander, who was badly thrown to the canvas.

The seventh was a Round of Long Count. The ref Cole stopped counting and ordered the champ to return to the neutral corner without coming forward to the middle of the ring. The third man did a right thing, but it was true that Suriyan stayed down and unable to resume fighting for more than ten seconds?probably five seconds more. Yamanakafs too much eagerness to finish him then and there eventually cost a knockout win.

The eighth witnessed Yamanaka connect with a left-right-left combination that decked Suriyan again, though he showed his heart to resume fighting and came back with a solid right hook to the champfs face. We saw another knockdown in round nine, when the champ landed a short but well-targeted shot to the solar plexus, which had Suriyan kneel down for a short while. The Thailander, in this session, was penalized a point for wrestling as he threw the champ to the canvas to prove he was a better judoka.

People then thought it was a matter of time that the champ would bring home the bacon soon. Suriyan, however, displayed his incredible durability and determination in the last three rounds from the tenth, as the Thailander kept fighting so hard that he took the tenth session with his aggressiveness. Yamanaka dominated the eleventh, and tried to do his best effort to extend his KO streak by scoring a final-round stoppage. But Suriyan also attempted to turn the tide for a come-from-behind knockout. They showed a well-contested final session unlike many examples of a winner on points circling to keep his lead like a ballet dancer, if not mentioning the name of Money.

Itfs true Yamanaka had a tougher time than expected, but, as expected, displayed his vaunted power-punching by flooring the durable rival on three occasions. Shouldnft he have been a Jack Dempsey, he would have been awarded a KO victory over a Gene Tunney in the seventh session. Unfortunately the third man of this fight was as strict and bookish as Dave Barry in 1927.

The unbruised victor Yamanaka jubilantly said, gI wish to participate in a unification bout with another organizationfs bantam champ to prove my strength. I may welcome going abroad for that opportunity.h Now that he succeeded in a mandatory defense, he may have a one-year period for any possible voluntary defense due to the WBC regulation. It may be good for US aficionados to watch Yamanaka invade the US market to prove his real value. We enjoyed the hard-fought affair with the champfs coolness and the challengerfs hot fighting spirit.

Under heavy raining, the hot affair was a good aperitif for us to drink hot gsakeh to make our body and heart warm at night.

On the undercard, formerly two-class world champ Takahiro Ao (27-2-1, 12 KOs), 137, defeated two-time world titlist Juan Carlos Salgado (26-4-1-1NC, 16 KOs), 135.75, by a unanimous decision (97-94, 97-93, 98-92) over ten hot frames. Ao, an aggressive southpaw, had the taller Mexican on the verge of knockdown with a barrage of punches in the closing seconds of the final round.

Promoter: Teiken Promotions.

WBC supervisor: Frank Quill (Australia).

(10-22-2014)


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