Naoya Inoue wasted no time aiming for his subsequent opponent.
Marlon Tapales needed to be within the entrance row on Tuesday in Tokyo the place he had each intention of difficult the winner. Inoue emphatically received the WBC and WBO junior featherweight titles in a one-sided eighth-round knockout of the undefeated Stephen Fulton title slate (now 21-1, 8 KOs) to grow to be a four-division title slate.
The dialog rapidly moved to the potential subsequent combat for Inoue. The opponent that makes essentially the most sense is the Filipino Tapales (37-3, 19KOs), who received the WBA and IBF 122-pound titles in a break up resolution win over Murodjon Akhmadaliev on April 8 in San Antonio, Texas.
“I need to combat Inoue to show to myself that I’m an excellent champion,” Tapales mentioned within the ring, respectful of his new divisional rival.
A intelligent smile graced his goal’s face, who wasted no time in responding – and he does not need to waste any time on his approach to the undisputed championship both.
“Let’s do it this 12 months,” insisted Inoue.
Tuesday’s win noticed Inoue (25-0, 22KOs) grow to be Japan’s first-ever unified title slate in at the least two weight courses. He beforehand held the undisputed bantamweight championship earlier than shifting up in weight earlier this 12 months.
Up to now, no male boxer has ever held undisputed crowns in two weight courses. Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford (39-0, 30KOs) has a shot at it in his four-belt welterweight unification bout in opposition to Errol Spence (28-0, 22KOs) this Saturday from T-Cell Area in Las Vegas.
Inoue – additionally a former WBC junior flyweight and WBO junior bantamweight titlist – would then grow to be the second male boxer to perform the feat if he faces and beats Tapales later this 12 months. Tapales would go down in Philippine historical past because the nation’s first undisputed champion, no matter weight, within the multi-belt period.
Jake Donovan is Senior Author for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox