January 28, 2021
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Katsunari Takayama, the 4-time strawweight world titleholder, returns to action in opposition t Reiya Konisha

Katsunari Takayama, the four-time strawweight world titleholder, returns to action towards Reiya Konisha

through Anson Wainwright

Former 4-time strawweight titleholder Katsunari Takayama will return to knowledgeable boxing after a 4-year hiatus when he faces Reiya Konisha on the Bunka center in Sanda, Japan on Monday.

Takayama may have looked for a straightforward comeback opponent but sought out the toughest problem he may locate.

“[Konishi] agreed to fight me, whereas lots of different eastern fighters refused,” Takayama (31-eight, 12 knockouts) instructed The Ring through Hank Hakoda. “I actually have been planning each step of my agenda.

“he’s a real in shape for me. I believe totally of his actual power, stamina and intellectual determination. He throws a variety of left-hand punches, which can be also potent. i do know he’s a superb fighter whom I may still be cautious with as he is in his leading. i will bring my ‘A’ video game into the fight, benefiting from my immense event. I will be in exact shape with my best possible coaching to demonstrate my appreciate for him ”

In practise, Takayama has held practising camps in Hyogo, Nagano and Tokyo earlier than heading domestic to Osaka to get excessive sparring classes with a wide variety of patterns.

Takayama, 37, fairly vacated his WBO title in 2016 to chase a dream of combating on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. although, when the junior flyweight division changed into dropped in a shakeup, the diminutive a hundred and five-pound jap fighter, who stands at 5-foot-2, changed into obliged to compete at 114 kilos.

“i was at ease with fighting in my natural form devoid of chopping down my weight as a result of there have been customary bouts in amateur boxing,” he defined. “when it comes to the change in rules, the largest adjustment I needed became to deplete all my stamina for 12 rounds in three rounds. As a professional you could battle with the aid of trial and error, however you have no time to change to plot B within the three rounds. each second is decisive for the combat. I in fact loved the differences.

“I had three newbie bouts with out getting a ticket to the Olympics, however I did my most useful (last August, Takayama became eliminated from the All-Japan Championships Tokai block preference round). I got lots of a good idea lessons that i can apply to my comeback bout; quicker rhythm and greater exact positioning of my head.”

as a substitute of retiring, Takayama has determined to make one other go of it as an expert

“since I started boxing at 14, I have insatiably loved this game with my unconditional passion, which nonetheless drives me forward,” explained the previous titleholder. “that is why i will proceed to commit myself to boxing at this age. I still have unfinished enterprise in the ring.

“I don’t wish to depart anything undone in my boxing existence. I do not wish to regret anything after I retire.

“searching returned at what I actually have achieved as a professional, I nevertheless have something left within the ring. I actually have set two goals that may still be completed. One is to win a WBA belt, however, sorry, I may still hold an extra goal secret unless the correct time comes. although, i will believe retiring until any worthwhile probability for the realm title has materialized with the aid of December 2021.”

Konisha became knowledgeable in 2013. He received his first 12 bouts earlier than claiming the one zero five-pound country wide title with the aid of edging Masataka Taniguchi (MD 10). He went on to make two defenses before stepping as much as junior flyweight, the place he lost in two world title makes an attempt, first to WBA beltholder Carlos Canizales (UD 12) and most recently to IBF titlist Felix Alvarado (UD 12). The 27-year-historic sports a list of 17-2 (7 KOs).

Our correspondent Hank Hakoda coordinated and translated this feature.

Questions and/or feedback can be despatched to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter @AnsonWainwright

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