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A commemorative event marking the one-hundredth year since the birth of the late world flyweight champion Yoshio Shirai, Japan’s first world champion, will be held on Nov. 23 at Tokyo’s Arakawa Ward, organizers have said recently. Shirai was born in the ward on Nov. 23 in 1923.
According to Japan Boxing Commission, the event, organized by the commission and sponsored by the ward, will be staged at Arakawa Sogo Sports Center with various commemorative items associated with Shirai, including his trunks, gowns, boxing gloves he used during training, his boxing shoes, posters when he won the world title, etc. planned to be put on display at an exhibition booth on the center’s first floor.
Besides, pictures of some of his fights taken by 16 mm film before there was television will be aired, they said.
Shirai won the world flyweight title from Dado Marino of the United States at Tokyo’s Korakuen Baseball Stadium on May 19, 1952, which boosted the morale of many Japanese people in the post-World War II period.
Shirai, who successfully defended the title four times, hung up his gloves in 1955 and had been a boxing critic and a TV commentator. He died of pneumonia on Dec. 26, 2003 at the age of 80.