Kazuto Ioka Set To Excite Fans On Cinco de Mayo
He is facing WBA titleholder Joshua Franco.
Boxing fans will have a blockbuster fight to look forward to for Cinco de Mayo and Mexican Independence Day weekend, featuring Kazuto Ioka.
Ioka, who is the current WBO super flyweight champion, will close out the year with a 115-pound unification bout against WBA titleholder Joshua Franco.
This is a rare occasion where someone outside of Mexico will star on Cinco de Mayo.
The fight will be held at the Ota City General Gymnasium in Tokyo, a venue that has hosted Ioka’s last five fights.
Japanese boxing fans were overjoyed a week ago when Naoya Inoue became the first Japanese fighter in history to become an undisputed champion in the four-belt era.
Now, Ioka has a chance to cement his legacy and add more national history by becoming the country’s first unified world champion in two weight classes.
He is already the country’s first male fighter to win world titles in four weight classes.
In 2012, Ioka overwhelmed Akira Yaegashi and clubbed his WBC minimumweight title with Yaegashi’s WBA strap. This was the first time a unification bout was held between two Japanese titlists.
The 33-year-old Osaka native has had his fair share of trouble with the Japanese Boxing Commission (JBC). The commission had earlier punished him for having tattoos visible during his win over Tanaka.
Body markings are not welcomed in Japan’s culture as they are often associated with criminality.