The Rising Sun’s Finest

Inoue and Tanaka are the future of boxing in Japan 


While Vasyl Lomachenko gets a ton of credit for being the fastest two division world champion in the history of boxing, there’s two Pugililists from the Land of the Rising Sun who have accomplished practically the same things.

Naoya Inoue and Kosei Tanaka both captured their second divison world titles in just their eighth professional prize fight, leaving them just one short the Hi-Tech Ukrainian’s record of seven.

Inoue, whom western fans are now familiar with after being showcased by HBO Boxing, has a record of 15-0 with 13 knockouts. He is set to go after his third division title on May 25th, as he moves up to the bantamweight division to face WBA champion Jamie McDonnell.

Tanaka, whose achievements to date have gone relatively unnoticed by most boxing fans. Both titles have been won while vacant, but both were successfully defended handily. His competition, while lacking a really big name, has been quality. That should definitely factor into play when evaluating him on a pound 4 pound scale, however it doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be given credit for being an elite pugilist with an extremely bright future at just 22-years-old.

Tanaka, 10-0 6KO, himself has stated he wishes to be remembered as one of Japan’s great pugilists. This weekend he is moving into his third weight division while facing the undefeated Ronnie Baldonado, 10-0-1 7KO, on Saturday in his native Japan. It will be his first time back in the ring since suffering two fractured orbital bones during his fight with Rangsan Chayanram on September 13th of last year.

By: Mal akhi Yosef

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