Tuesday, April 24, 2018  |


Kal Yafai outpoints Suguru Muranaka, retains WBA 115-lb. title


Unbeaten junior bantamweight standout Kal Yafai retained his WBA title for the first time by turning back the spirited effort of Suguru Muranaka in front of his hometown fans on Saturday at the Barclay Arena in Birmingham, England.

It looked like it might be an early night for Yafai (22-0, 14 knockouts) when he dropped the WBA’s No.-10 ranked challenger in the second round.

To Muranaka’s credit he rose and gave a good account of himself, ultimately lasting the distance. The Birmingham native was deducted a point in the eighth round but by then Yafai seemed to have the fight in hand.

Yafai, who had been vocal during fight week of his wishes to face the best available opposition at 115 pounds, was able to win a wide 12-round unanimous decision by scores of 118-108 and 119-107 (twice).

The Japanese challenger saw his record dip to (25-3-1, 8 KOs) but put up a respectable performance.

In support of the main event, former welterweight title challenger Frankie Gavin (24-3, 14 KOs) won a wide eight-round decision over grizzled veteran Renald Garrido (18-15-1, 3 KOs) by the single score of 77-75.

Streaking welterweight Sam Eggington (21-3, 13 KOs) brutally stopped defending European champion Ceferino Rodriguez (24-2, 12 KOs) in the 10th round.


Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter @AnsonWainwright

  • IanF69

    No mention of Welterweight Josh Kelly who once again looked sharp with a 4th rd stoppage of Jony Vena. Deadly body shots and a peach of an overhand rights had his man down 3 times before it was stopped…..only his 2nd fight but he’s one to watch.

  • Pete

    Muranaka was tough. Yafai hit him with every shot in the book, repeatedly and seemed to seriously stun him numerous times, but Muranaka just kept coming. Wow. Good fight, though Yafai never seemed troubled.

    The Eggington fight was fight of the night. An amazing round 7 and a contender for round of the year saw both men rocked after a furious exchange. Then they took a couple of rounds before the 10th round – brutal KO from Eggington… he landed a two punch combination twice and Rodriguez was gone. Out the ring, asleep. A few worrying moments but in the end he seemed okay.

    Two really good fights.