Long-time WBC world bantamweight champion Shinsuke Yamanaka is back in action this Tuesday night (August 15, 2017) in Kyoto, Japan as he takes on the challenge of Mexico’s Luis Nery. Yamanaka is making the 13th title defense of the belt he won back in November of 2011, and his impressive run of 12 title defenses has seen him appearing on some of the pound for pound Top 10 lists.
At 27-0-2 overall as a pro, the 34-year-old Japanese boxer is unbeaten, and it is even more impressive when you consider that the two draws he has on his record came early in his career. We last saw him this past March when he stopped another Mexican, Carlos Carson, in round seven.
Yamanaka is 5-foot-7, making him tall for the weight class, and he will be taller and longer than Nery heading into this one. Yamanaka is a crafty southpaw who counts on his left-handed stance to be a riddle for opponents. Yamanaka came through a two-fight rivalry with former world champion Anselmo Moreno of Panama with a 2-0 record, and “Chemito” is a southpaw as well. Nery brings with him a southpaw stance, but Yamanaka should be able to handle that with his experience.
As for Nery, the 22-year-old finds himself traveling to Japan for his first fight abroad. Nery (23-0) is really hoping to catch Yamanaka on the way down, so to speak, as Yamanaka will be turning 35 years old in October of this year. Youth and power are the two great advantages Nery has heading into this one, as he has 17 stoppages in his 23-fight career. The word is that Nery arrived in Japan very focused on the job at hand.
The Mexico vs. Japan matchups of recent years in boxing have led to the hottest active rivalry in the sport. It is notable that Several Bookmakers is giving Yamanaka-Nery a near toss-up line. In recent years, Japan saw longtime super featherweight champion Takashi Uchiyama hit his mid-30s, and he lost his longtime WBC world title to Panama’s Jezreel Corrales. Perhaps it is Yamanaka’s turn to pass on the torch to a younger man.
Shimazu Arena – Kyoto, Japan
Bantamweight – 12 rounds
Luis Nery -105
Shinsuke Yamanaka -125
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