By Joe Koizumi
Today, on Sunday, we got up early and went to the Korakuen Hall, not to church, as the show started so early as 11:25 am. It was because of another rent of the Hall by a TV vaudeville program in the evening. WBC#11 ranked Tomonobu Shimizu (14-3-1, 5 KOs), 112, disappointingly kept his Japanese flyweight belt as he was held to a technical draw by hard-punching challenger Shigetaka Ikehara (17-1-2, 13 KOs), 112, at 0:57 of the second session here in Tokyo, Japan. Leading on points as he was, Shimizu suffered a come-from-behind tenth-round KO defeat by WBC flyweight champ Daisuke Naito in a quest for the belt last July. Ikehara was the ultimate winner of a tourney to decide the mandatory 112-pound challenger among JBC contenders, though he used to be a 108-pound campaigner. Ikehara, as expected, made a furious opening attack, occasionally landing a solid shot at a time to Shimizu’s handsome face to win a point. But their head-collision opened a gash over the left eyebrow, which became so worsened early in the second that the referee had the cut examined by the ringside physician and coldly declared a halt. Some disgusted spectators wished to drink afterward as usual, but it was still too early as it ended only before 3 pm. Promoter: Kaneko Promotions.