Sunny Edwards Calls Out Junto Nakatani for New Year’s Bout In Japan
Reigning IBF flyweight champion Sunny “Showtime” Edwards (19-0, 4 KOs) is leaving his dance card open for anyone at 112 and 115 pounds. That includes Japanese southpaw and one-time WBO 112-pound champion Junto Nakatani (24-0, 18 KOs), as Edwards made the following post on social media.
EDWARDS HUNGRY FOR THE SPOTLIGHT
Since winning the IBF belt in April 2021, Showtime has been hungry for a high-profile fight. So far, it’s been no luck for the 27-year-old from London, England. Throughout 2021 and 2022, Edwards had hopes of a unification bout against WBC flyweight champion Julio Cesar Martinez. Edwards has been frustrated by repeated attempts to make that fight, only to fall through during negotiations.
He seems to have his sights now directed at Nakatani. Some pundits consider the 25-year-old the most dangerous in the lower-weight divisions. Nakatani won the WBO flyweight belt with an eighth-round knockout of Giemel Magramo in November 2020. He successfully defended that title twice before vacating the title and deciding to move up to 115 in November 2022.
On paper, Edwards and Nakatani would be an excellent matchup. Edwards is a pure boxer who often frustrates opponents with his movement. He relies on his speed, skills, and defense to get the job done.
Nakatani is more of a boxer-puncher. The southpaw fights with a relaxed tension and often makes fights look easy. Tall for the lower weights at 5’7, he has shown the ability to win in a variety of styles. The product of from Kanagawa, Japan can either pick opponents apart from the outside or come forward and chop his foes down.
HOW NAKATANI-EDWARDS COULD HAPPEN
There is a scenario where that potential fight happens at the end of this year. Nakatani is set to face one-time WBA Regular 115-pound champion Andrew Moloney for the vacant WBO junior bantamweight title. Should he win, it’s plausible that Nakatani’s first title defense could be against Edwards.
It is a tradition in Japan for at least one of their world champions to fight on New Year’s Eve. A Nakatani vs Edwards clash would fit that bill. There’s a lot that must occur for that scenario to fall into place. But Edwards has his fingers crossed and is hopeful he finally lands the big fight he’s always longed for.