Shinsuke Yamanaka made the seventh successful defense of his WBC bantamweight title today in Tokyo, topping a game but outclassed Suriyan Sor Rungvisai on unanimous decision scores of 116-108, 115-109, and 114-110. BLH had it 117-107 for Yamanaka.
Yamanaka (22-0-2, 16 KO) did have some trouble with the reckless aggression of Suriyan (37-6-1, 16 KO), who took the first two rounds on my card by coming hard at the slow-starting Japanese champion. After that, though, Yamanaka seemed to control the majority of the fight, largely picking off Suriyan at distance, countering him nicely, and scoring knockdowns in the seventh, eighth, and ninth rounds. Suriyan also lost a point (seemingly for headbutts) in round nine, digging his hole even deeper.
Judge Malcolm Bulner of Australia saw the fight even in rounds, however, with the difference being entirely the knockdowns and the point deduction, Quebec's Jack Woodburn had it 7-5 for Yamanaka, so the judges at ringside saw it a good bit closer than I did, or at least two of them did.
Yamanaka, 32, further stakes his claim as the game's best bantamweight, though Tomoki Kameda may be closing in on him in the mythical rankings of boxing fans such as myself (and yourself).
In the co-feature, Takahiro Ao (27-3-1, 12 KO) handed Juan Carlos Salgado (26-4-1, 16 KO) a third straight loss, winning a lightweight fight on scores of 97-94, 97-93, and 98-92. It was the fourth straight win for Ao following his 2012 upset loss to Gamaliel Diaz.