November 7, 2014
Unbeaten ex-WBC 105-pound champ, Japanfs Naoya Inoue (only 7-0, 6 KOs) will jump up two categories and have a very ambitious crack at WBO 115-pound belt against Omar Narvaez (43-1-2, 23 KOs), the pride of Argentina, in Tokyo, Japan, on December 30. It was announced yesterday by former WBC/WBA 105-pound champ and Inouefs promoter Hideyuki Ohashi of Ohashi Promotions. It must be the most sensational matchup here in Japan this year, and our aficionados have been stunned by this startling news even though Inoue, still 21, had a weight problem and outgrew the light-flyweight division by renouncing the WBC throne this Monday.
Narvaez, dubbed gHuracan (hurricane)h in his country, participated in a couple of Olympic Games in Barcelona and Sydney, and turned professional in 2000 to acquire the WBO flyweight belt in his twelfth bout in July 2002, when Inoue was just nine years of age. Having kept his belt sixteen times--more than Pascual Perez (nine) and Miguel Canto (fourteen)?Huracan moved up to the junior bantam category, and gained his second WBO throne in 2010 to go on keeping it eleven times to his credit. His one and only setback was against Nonito Donaire in New York, where he failed to win the WBO bantam belt in October 2011.
Inoue, one of the brightest Japanese boxers in history, acquired seven national high school championships, but pitifully failed to be a Japanese representative for the Olympic Games in London and then promptly entered the paid ranks, belonging to Ohashi Gym. The youngster, in his fourth pro bout, captured the national light-fly belt by outscoring world-rated Ryoichi Taguchi, and won the vacant OPBF title via fifth round annihilation over Filipino champ Jerson Mansio in his sixth last December. The baby-faced Inoue, four days before his twenty-first birthday, became the WBC 108-pound titlist by surprisingly dispatching Adrian Hernandez in six lopsided rounds in his sixth professional outing. He successfully made his first defense of the belt by scoring an eleventh stoppage over Samartlek Kokietgym this September. Then he relinquished his WBC diadem as he outgrew the light-fly division. We had known Inoue had a weight problem, but couldnft imagine he would move up seven pounds to the 115-pound category.
gInoue might not realize how strong and how formidable Omar Narvaez is,h said some Japanese fight scribe, but it might be true that Narvaez is too much more experienced than he. Inoue, an enfant terrible, proudly said at the press conference, gIfm happy to be able to exchange punches with such a great champion as Narvaez. Ifll do my best to win over him.h
His younger brother, also ex-Japanese national high school champ, 19-year-old WBA#6 light-fly Takuma Inoue (3-0, 1 KO) also participate in an undercard to cope with Omarfs brother, WBC#17 flyweight Nestor Daniel Narvaez (20-2-2, 9 KOs) for eight rounds.
It is interesting to watch the confrontations of the Narvaez and Inoue brothers in the end of this year.
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