By Carlos Costa
Veteran Filipino warrior Lito Dante from the Paradise Island of Bohol dominated, overpowered and knocked out in the 12th round, the heavy-handed Japanese champion WBC # 3 Tsubasa Koura to claim the OPBF minimumweight belt in Yokohama, Japan.
The climax of the dramatic battle unfolded in the combat’s last round when Dante (16-10-4, 8 KO’s) unleashed a serious of violent unanswered right hooks over Koura (14-1, 9 KO’s), sending the Nippon boxer reeling, wounded and groggy against the ropes in Koura’s own red corner.
With his man hurt against the ropes, Lito Dante intensified his relentless attack, hurting the Japanese even further with more damaging blows, all of them to the head, including a brutal straight right to the jaw that forced referee Tetsuya Iida to stop the unbalanced war to spare his fellow countryman of more dangerous suffering. Official time of stoppage was 1:18 in round 12.
The clash was Tsubasa Koura’s fourth defense of the green OPBF title that he captured by brutalizing and halting Filipino Jaysever Abcede in July of 2017. This time around, it was Koura the one getting punished and knocked out.
Dante was accompanied in Yokohama, Japan, by veteran matchmaker Art Monis of Hardstone Boxing, who after the win, climbed to the ring proudly waving the glorious Filipino Flag.
The rewarding victory is Dante’s second consecutive win in the Land of the Rising Sun. The Boholano has fought a total of three times in Japan, winning two, drawing one; and it is probable that he’d be back in the land of Fighting Harada to defend his newly acquired OPBF crown.
The clash of Koura vs Dante for the OPBF strap at the Osanbashi Hall in Yokohama, Japan, was a production of Reason Daiki Promotions.
Carlos Costa is a Panama boxing reporter living in the Philippines. Carlos can be reached by email [email protected] or whatsapp 09184538152.