Veteran Takayama to return to professional ring in 4 years in Nov.
Sep 10, 2020 17:05 pm
Sep 10, 2020 17:03 pm
World Boxing Association super and International Boxing Federation bantamweight champion Naoya ‘’Monster’’ Inoue held a press conference online on Sept. 9 that he will defend his titles against top-ranked World Boxing Organization bantamweight Jason Moloney of Australia at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NV on Oct. 31 (Nov. 1 Japan time).
In the online meeting from his Ohashi Boxing Gym, southwest of Tokyo, the soft-spoken Inoue, 27, said, ‘’I have always wanted to have a fight and am well prepared. I am in a perfect physical condition now although the coming bout will be my first fight in almost one year.’’
It will be Inoue’s fourth defense of the WBA title and second of the IBF crown.
The undefeated Inoue won the final of the World Boxing Super Series by beating Nonito Donaire of the Philippines in Japan last November. While he suffered an orbital fracture in that duel with Donaire, that broken part has healed completely because of the long absence from the ring. He has a record of 19 straight wins, including 16 by knockout.
Originally, Inoue had been scheduled to take on World Boxing Organization kingpin John Riel Casimero of the Philippines in a three-belt title unification fight on Apr. 25 in Las Vegas, the fight had been postponed time and time again due chiefly to the pandemic of the novel coronavirus or COVID-19 worldwide.
Under such circumstances, the Inoue side set aside the Casimero fight for the time being and has decided to face the 29-year-old Australian, who has a 21-1 win-loss record with 18 KOs, as he will be available at that time.
Commenting on Moloney, Inoue said, ‘’He can taka a punch and has a lot of stamina. He also has an excellent technique. Overall, I think he is superior to Casimero. I will work out my fighting plan in the next month and a half.’’
The coming fight will be held behind closed doors due to COVID-19, and Inoue pointed out, ‘’I fought (with Donaire) in front of some 20,000 fanatic fans at the Saitama Super Arena, north of Tokyo. Since my next fight will be conducted without spectators, and that is the important point. How to maintain my concentration is sine qua non.’’