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Ex-Japan welterweight champion Tsujimoto dies at 75

Dec 25, 2023 21:44 pm

  Former Japanese welterweight champion Shoji Tsujimoto of Yonekura Boxing Gym died at a hospital in Osaka on Dec. 23, it was learned on Dec. 25. He was 75.

Tsujimoto in active days

  After turning pro in 1970 after a long amateur career both at Namisho Gakuen and Kindai University in Osaka, the left-handed Tsujimoto made a professional debut from the gym in 1970, wrested the Japanese welterweight title in 1972 by stopping Takatsune Shimizu and successfully defended the title 12 times until he was stopped by Akio Kameda of Kyoei Boxing Gym in 1978.

  Tsujimoto challenged Jose Pipino Cuevas of Mexico for the latter’s World Boxing Association welterweight title in October 1976. It was the first time that a Japanese boxer had taken a crack at a world welterweight title. Though lost by technical knockout in the sixth round, Tsujimoto fought well early in the fight.

  Tsujimoto retired after he lost to Kameda. His professional record was 27 wins, including 14 KOs, against four losses and two draws.

  After his retirement, Tsujimoto was running a security company and then launched Esaka Boxing Club in Osaka Prefecture’s Suita in 1993. He served as the head of the West Japan Pro Boxing Association for six years starting 2001.

  Tsujimoto had a long recuperation for the last 10 years or so as he was suffering an array of health problems.

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