Unified super bantamweight champion Murodjon Akhmadaliev, out of action since last January, could defend his IBF and WBA belts against a very worthy contender in the coming months. Asian Boxing, citing Uzbek website Olamsport, claims Akhmadaliev is “looking” to face interim IBF champ Ryosuke Iwasa on March 13th in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
Iwasa (27-3, 17 KO) defeated Yukinori Oguni for the IBF belt in 2017 and defended it against Ernesto Saulong, but controversially lost it to TJ Doheny his next time out. Undaunted, he got back on track with a decision over gritty veteran Cesar Juarez, then beat down Marlon Tapales to claim the interim title 13 months back.
His only other losses as a professional came against Shinsuke Yamanaka and Lee Haskins, the former in 2011 and the latter in 2015.
That interim title came about due to unified champion Daniel Roman needing to deal with WBA mandatory challenger Akhmadaliev (8-0, 6 KO), who narrowly out-battled Roman to claim the titles.
With fellow champions Luis Nery and Angelo Leo otherwise occupied, Nery with a brewing clash against Brandon Figueroa and Leo with Stephen Fulton a week from this coming Saturday, this is about as good a defense as you could ask for. Let’s hope it comes through and isn’t rendered unwatchable by time zones.