By Joe Koizumi
Formidable WBC bantamweight champ Hozumi Hasegawa (27-2, 11 KOs), Japan, today welcomed his twenty-ninth birthday two days before his title defense against Nicaraguan challenger Alvaro Perez (18-1-1-3NC, 12 KOs), who expressed his sportsmanlike congratulations at a press conference on Wednesday in Kobe, Japan. The champ is making his tenth defense since dethroning Veeraphol Nakhornluang-Promotion more than four years ago.
Each showed his confidence of victory for this coming Friday. Perez, two years his junior at 27, said, “I’ve prepared for this opportunity very well to make my condition 100%. I will bring back the belt to Nicaragua.” Hasegawa, a usually modest-speaking champ, said, “I’d like to aim for the fifth defense straight by KO as well as the third straight in the first round.” His intention of another initial-round KO seemed to have Nippon TV’s staff scared of a short coverage again, as Hasegawa displayed too quick demolitions in succession over Vusi Malinga in March and Nestor Rocha in July. Perez, on the contrary, predicted his triumph after fighting twelve rounds fully.
On the undercard, former WBC feather ruler Takahiro Aoh, a Japanese southpaw sharp-shooter, will make his first appearance as a 130-pounder after his forfeiture of his throne to Elio Diaz and face Colombian Feider Viloria over ten rounds.
This show will be presented by Shinsei Promotions in association with Teiken Promotions.