By Joe Koizumi
Unbeaten Japanese light-fly champ, WBC#9/WBA#9 Ryo Miyazaki (11-0-2, 6 KOs), 107.5, captured the OPBF belt as he overwhelmed defending champ and compatriot, WBC#8/WBA#12 Katsuhiko Iezumi (28-8-3, 19 KOs), hard-hitting but vulnerable, with a flurry of punches and finally halted him at 2:41 of the eighth round in a scheduled twelve on Monday in Osaka, Japan.
The shorter puncher Miyazaki controlled the contest from the outset, scoring a big shot at a time against a nervous and intimidated champ. Being in command, Miyazaki turned loose and pinned Iezumi with non-stop rallies in round eight, when the referee Fukuchi issued a standing count against the obviously groggy champ with his back to the ropes. Miyazaki furiously swarmed over the fading champ, when the third man terminated the lopsided affair to save the loser from further punishment. All the judges had tallied it 68-65 in the new champ’s favor. It is rumored that Miyazaki will promptly renounce the newly acquired OPBF throne to pave the way for his stablemate, unbeaten golden boy WBC#11 Kazuto Ioka to fight for the vacant belt in July.
In a supporting event, OPBF female Asami Shikasho (4-1, 2 KOs), 111.5, barely kept her regional belt by a close but unanimous nod (96-95 and 96-94 twice) over Filipina Marnelle Verano (4-2-1, 1 KO), 109.25, over ten. Shikasho, previously a very aggressive girl, looked nervous, stiff and defensive in comparison with her previous fights in her initial defense.
Promoter: Flash Akabane Promotions.