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Nakazato decisions Murakami, retains Japan lightweight title in Okinawa

Dec 25, 2023 9:57 am

  Shuma Nakazato of Boxing Club Okinawa pounded out a 10-round unanimous decision over sixth-ranked challenger Yudai Murakami of Kadoebi Boxing Gym to retain his Japanese lightweight title on Dec. 24 in Okinawa.

Nakazato (L) manages to win against tall lefty Murakami

  It was the 27-year-old Nakazato’s first successful defense of the title he captured by knocking out Shu Utsuki of Watanabe Boxing Gym last April.

  Fighting at Okinawa Karate Kaikan in the city of Tomigusuku, two of the three judges scored the fight 97-93 while the remaining judge saw it 98-92, all in favor of Nakazato.

  There were no knockdowns in the fight as the tall left-handed Murakami, 24, did not allow Nakazato to get inside freely, although Nakazato occasionally landed overhand rights to the head and piled up points.

Mishiro (R) gets into ring after fight

  With the victory, Nakazato improved his record to 14 wins, including eight knockouts, against two losses and three draws. Murakami fell to a 4-2 win-loss tally.

  Nakazato is next expected to face former Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation super featherweight champion Hironori Mishiro of Yokohama Hikari Boxing Gym.

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