Townsville’s Josh King made the first successful defence of his WBO Oriental title Saturday night, with a hard fought 12 round victory over tough Japanese opponent Koichi Ito at the Aitkenvale PCYC.
From the opening round the fighters set a fast and furious pace, King landing well with the left hook early and shaking Ito with a right hand on the bell to end round 3.
Neither man was hard to find during the contest, as they both seemed content to sit chest on chest and unleash on the inside.
Although the action was very back and forth, King had built up a sizeable lead. Going into the final round Ito seemed to realise, as the gallant Japanese visitor didn’t stop throwing punches for the entire round.
The final bell was almost unable to be heard over the vocal crowd cheering as the fighters swung for the fences to end proceedings.
Both competitors showed extreme conditioning to sustain such a high pace for the entire 12 rounds, but it was King who came out on top scoring a unanimous decision. Judges scorecards read 120-109, 119-109, 119-109.
King improves his record to 17-3, 8KOs and seeks the opportunity to face a big name opponent.
The semi main event saw Les Sherrington take on another valiant Japanese warrior in Kazuyuki Fukuyama, scoring a unanimous decision over 8 rounds.
It seemed Sherrington was in for a short night at the office when he dropped his opponent with his first flurry of punches, then once more in the opening round.
Fukuyama showed extreme heart to take the fight to the dominant Sherrington, who would drop the Japanese fighter again in the final round. Scores read 80-69, 80-69, 80-69.
After 3 and a half years out of the ring Jordan Gee Hoy showed no sign of rust, scoring a 3rd round TKO over Mark Dalby.
The slick Gee Hoy countered with precision shots and wobbled Dalby in the final stages of round 1.
Controlling the fight, Gee Hoy would land a left hook that stiffened Dalby and sent him crashing to the canvas in round 3. Dalby beat the count, but as Gee Hoy rushed in to land another barrage of punches the corner would throw in the towel.
Rising star Kolby Johnston scored his 2nd professional victory in as many weeks, with a KO over veteran Aswin Cabuy in the 2nd round.
Cabuy came out and looked to test Johnston early, but it was the Mt Isa born product that landed a crippling body shot in the 2nd round that made Cabuy grimace and fold to his knees.
He was unable to answer the count and the bout was waved off. Johnston improves to 2-0, 2KOs.
Also on the card, Lloyd Bagley was upset on debut against Cairns’ Johnathan Taylor in their Super Middleweight matchup.
Taylor flew across the ring in the opening round to unload a flurry that dropped Bagley in the corner. He was able to recover and answer the count, but as Taylor came back in Derek Milham stopped the contest to hand Taylor a TKO victory. Many believe the stoppage was very premature.