Ioka retains off Fukunaga in WBO super flyweight title defense

Japan’s Kazuto Ioka effectively defended his WBO tremendous flyweight earth championship for the fourth time on Friday, profitable a 12-spherical unanimous selection in excess of dogged sixth-ranked compatriot Ryoji Fukunaga.

Ioka was information early to look at his opponent probe from a distance at Ota City Basic Gymnasium just before steadily going above to the attack from the second round.

The champion selected his spots to land flurries of punches that held him forward in details. Although the southpaw Fukunaga was considerably from outmatched by way of the very first six rounds in his initial profession planet title combat, he experienced some battering in the seventh and eighth rounds.

Japan’s Kazuto Ioka (R) goes on the offensive versus compatriot Ryoji Fukunaga in their WBO super flyweight environment championship title combat at Ota Town General Gymnasium in Tokyo on Dec. 31, 2021. (Kyodo)      

By the 10th spherical, with Fukunaga needing a knockout to acquire, Ioka took a purely defensive stance, and the challenger started taunting him. Fukunaga dared the champ to attack by spreading his arms huge, but Ioka was content to battle from the ropes and counterpunch until finally Fukunaga ran out of rounds.


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The battle was hastily declared this thirty day period to replace Ioka’s title unification bout versus IBF winner Jerwin Ancajas of the Philippines, who was not able to enter Japan amid the existing strict coronavirus border controls.

“Devoid of the unification bout, my point out of intellect was incredibly difficult, but I supposed to present those people men and women supporting me a superior combat,” Ioka mentioned. “Obtaining received this struggle, I will move ahead in a way to make a unification bout (in 2022) possible.”

Ioka’s history improved to 28-2 in 30 bouts, when Fukunaga, the Japan tremendous flyweight winner, observed his report drop to 15-5 in 20 pro fights.

Japan’s Kazuto Ioka celebrates right after successfully defending his WBO tremendous flyweight environment championship for the fourth time on Dec. 31, 2021. Ioka gained a 12-round unanimous final decision around sixth-ranked compatriot Ryoji Fukunaga at Ota City Standard Gymnasium in Tokyo. (Kyodo)

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