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WBA bantamweight champ Inoue vows to be more active in 1st title defense against Ancajas

Feb 08, 2024 19:33 pm

  World Boxing Association bantamweight champion Takuma Inoue of Ohashi Boxing Gym showed a public workout at the gym in Yokohama on Feb. 8 in preparation for his title defense against ninth-ranked challenger Jerwin Ancajas of the Philippines on Feb. 24 in Tokyo.

Takuma Inoue (L) hits punching bag under Shingo Inoue’s supervision

  The scheduled 12-rounder at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan Sumo Arena will be part of the event called ‘’Prime Video Presents Live Boxing 7, ‘’ in which two more world championship bouts and one bantamweight eight-rounder are also planned.

  While the Inoue-Ancajas fight was originally scheduled to be held last November, it was postponed due to Inoue’s rib injury.

  The 28-year-old Inoue, a younger brother of Naoya ‘’the Monster’’ Inoue, said, ‘’I had my injured part completely healed and have had enough sparring. I’m in good condition.’’ Inoue is making his first defense of the title he captured last April by decisioning Liborio Solis of Venezuela for the vacant title.

  Inoue had a little less than 60 rounds of sparring with up-and-coming southpaw Riku Masuda of Teiken Boxing Gym, who will compete in the eight-round fight in the event, and others.

  The 32-year-old Ancajas is a former International Boxing Federation’s world super flyweight champion and successfully defended the title for nine times until he was dethroned in October 2022.

  Under the general theme of ‘’Evolution,’’ Inoue said he is determined to display an active fight. ‘’Though my opponent this time is the strongest boxer in my career, I am confident of throwing more punches in the upcoming fight (because I have enough stamina to do that).’’

  In this connection, the gym’s head Hideyuki Ohashi said, ‘’He (Ancajas) is an excellent boxer in terms of punching power, speed and technique. In particular, I am fearful of the timing he throws his left uppercut.’’

(from L to R) Shingo and Takuma Inoue and gym’s head Ohashi

  Inoue’s father and trainer Shingo Inoue said, ‘’Takuma should learn more active boxing. He tends to wait for his opponent’s move. I think Takuma should shorten that and come out strong on his own initiative.’’

  Since the present bantamweight division is in a situation where there is rivalry between warlords after Naoya Inoue unified the division’s titles and moved up to super bantamweight last year, Takuma said, ‘’I want to have an overwhelming presence in the division.’’

  Inoue has a record of 18 wins, including four knockouts, against a loss, while the left-handed Ancajas has a 34-3-2 win-loss-draw tally with 23 KOs.

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