By Joe Koizumi
WBA featherweight champ Chris John (46-0-2, 22 KOs) said, “I’ll defend my belt with him with Dragon Punch” as the Indonesian hero having kept his belt on no less than fifteen times is called “dragon” at his home turf. Japanese challenger Shoji Kimura (24-4-2, 9 KOs), handled by ex-world flyweight ruler Susumu Hanagata, countered with his quick reply, saying, “I will respond to the champ’s attack with Hanagata Special.”
What’s Hanagata Special? He described it as a special weapon to dethrone the Indonesian dragon with a single shot coached by Hanagata, who won the world belt at his fifth attempt in 1974. They will square off here in Singapore on Saturday.
This is not a Bruce Lee movie, but people here are looking forward to watching a knockout by either within the distance. On the undercard there is an IBO world featherweight title bout between Indonesian Daud Yordan (28-2, 22 KOs) and unbeaten Filipino hard-puncher Lorenzo Villanueva (22-0, 21 KOs), over twelve frames.
The press conference, headed by promoter of record Angelo Hyder of Australia, looked like a movie “Casablanca” featuring foreign boxing people from many countries of Singapore, Australia, Indonesia, China, Korea, Philippines, Taiwan and Japan. Should it be very successful, the local promoter Marina Bay Sands may make it regular to stage boxing shows to attract many customers. This time there come numerous Japanese tourists who enjoy May holidays here in Singapore, which may have a possibility of becoming a Las Vegas in South East Asia because of its geographical advantage.
The MC of today’s press conference was Jimmy Lennon Jr.