By Joe Koizumi
Olympic gold medalist in the middleweight class, sensational Japanese Ryota Murata, 26, expressed that he would not box any more, much less turn professional—to concentrate on his second career as an instructor to cultivate future medalists like him. Murata became the first Olympic gold medalist in 48 years since Takao Sakurai in the Tokyo Games in 1964, as he narrowly defeated Brazilian Esquiva Falcao by a hairline 14-13 decision in London. Some promoters or managers have made attractive offers for Murata to enter the paid ranks. The hard-hitting six-footer, however, declined to accept any of those proposals but decided to call it quits and study more on sports science abroad. It is a very smart decision for Murata since it will be very hard to be successful in the professional 160-pound category. We hope his bright future as the leader in our Japanese amateur field.