Golovkin-Murata undercard: Junto Nakatani to defend WBO flyweight title against Ryota Yamauchi
On Wednesday, it was announced that IBF middleweight titleholder Gennadiy Golovkin would face WBA counterpart Ryota Murata in a unification matchup at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, on April 9.
Well, news reached The Ring earlier that highly-talented WBO flyweight titleholder Junto Nakatani would defend his title against Ryota Yamauchi on the undercard.
Nakatani, who is rated No. 2 by The Ring at 112 pounds, will make the second defense of his crown against Yamauchi, who is rated No. 10.
The 24-year-old Nakatani (22-0, 17 knockouts) claimed the vacant WBO belt by defeating Giemel Magramo (KO 8) in November 2020. He impressively turned back the challenge of former WBO 108-pound titleholder Angel Acosta (TKO 4) in his maiden defense last September.
Yamauchi (8-1, 7 KOs) turned professional in 2017. He won his first four fights before tasting defeat against Wulan Tuolehazi (UD 12). The 27-year-old has rebounded with four wins to earn his world title shot.
Also on the card, OPBF lightweight titlist Shuichiro Yoshino will meet former WBO 130-pound beltholder Masayuki Ito.
Yoshino (14-0, 11 KOs), 30, turned professional in 2015. He won the Japanese national title – which he defended seven times – and also holds the OPBF title. Ito will be his most significant test to date.
Ito made his name at junior lightweight, where he won the OPBF title before graduating to world level and dethroning then-WBO beltholder Christopher Diaz (UD 12). He defended successfully against Evgeny Chuprakov (TKO 7), but lost out against Jamel Herring (UD 12). Ito (27-3-1, 15 KOs) then moved up to lightweight and is 2-1 in his last three fights.
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