Naoya Inoue Eyes Moving to Super Bantamweight
Naoya Inoue (22-0, 19 KOs) wants to unify more titles in his weight class after he retained his WBA and IBF bantamweight titles on Tuesday with a victory over Aran Dipaen.
Inoue beat his Thai challenger with an eighth-round stoppage in Tokyo. This was the champ’s first fight in Japan in two years.
After the win, Inoue outlined his plans. He hinted at moving up a division if he is not granted unification fights.
“I’ve been placing a lot of importance on unifying the four belts, but if the individual fights don’t happen, I’ll start thinking about the super bantamweight title,” the 28-year-old said.
Dipaen gave Inoue a run for his money despite being a heavy underdog. The WBA/IBF champ admitted that the Thailand star absorbed his haymakers like a pro.
“He used to be a Muay Thai fighter and he brought that toughness,” Inoue said.
“I started to wonder whether my punches were having an effect — that’s how tough he was.”
“The fight didn’t go as everyone was expecting, but it was good to fight in Japan again after two years.”