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WBO Super flyweight champ Nakatani fully prepared for Sept. 18 title defense against Cortes

Aug 19, 2023 10:38 am

  Newly crowned World Boxing Organization super flyweight champion Junto Nakatani of M.T Boxing Gym is right on track as he has been engaged in active training in the United States in preparation for his first title defense against ninth-ranked Argi Cortes of Mexico on Sept. 18 at Tokyo’s Ariake Arena, according to the gym.

  The 25-year-old Nakatani, who won the vacant title by demolishing Andrew Moloney of Australia in the 12th and the final round in May in Las Vegas, Nevada, has done a total of 142 rounds of sparring with top U.S. professional and amateur boxers, including World Boxing Association’s seventh-ranked light flyweight Anthony Olascuaga, WBO’s 10th-ranked bantamweight Saul Sanchez and Japhethlee Llamido who is known for his constant sparring with Naoya ‘’the Monster’’ Inoue of Ohashi Boxing Gym.

  Nakatani, who visited the U.S. on July 20 and has been training in Los Angeles by sitting at the feet of noted trainers Rudy Hernandez and Daisuke Okabe there, said, ‘’The temperature and moisture in LA are lower than in Japan. This kind of atmosphere is suited for me very much. I have, therefore, been able to do high-quality training. Also, I am happy that my (sparring) partners have given me precious advice sometime.’’

  The undefeated Nakatani, a former WBO world flyweight champion, is expected to return to Japan at the beginning of September. He has a record of 25 straight wins, including 19 knockouts. The 28-year-old Cortes has a 25-3-2 win-loss-draw tally with 10 KOs.

  The Sept. 18 event dubbed ‘’Prime Video Presents Live Boxing5’’ will also include a title defense of World Boxing Council and WBA light flyweight champion Kenshiro Teraji of B.M.B. Boxing Gym against top-ranked Hekkie Budler of South Africa.

  By the same token, kickboxer-turned Tenshin Nasukawa of Teiken Boxing gym will have his second bout as a professional boxer as one of the undercards as he will face Mexico’s Juan Flores in a super bantamweight eight-rounder.

PHOTO by M.T Boxing Gym

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