The Cyber Boxing Zone Newswire

Veeraphol Demolishes Tatsuyoshi's Hope: Joe Koizumi

As of July 10, 1999


August 29, 1999

OSAKA, JAPAN-Hard-hitting Thailander VEERAPHOL NAKONLUANG-PROMOTION, 118, kept his WBC bantamweight throne as he outsped former champ JOICHIRO TATSUYOSHI, 118, Japan, and battered him to the punch en route to a fine stoppage at 0:44 of the 7th round.

A huge crowd of some 27,000 fans was in attendance to see the swan song of the Japanese superstar at the Osaka Dome, which is usually used for baseball games.

Tatsuyoshi, 29, attempted to win the WBC 118-pound title for the 4th time, but Veeraphol proved too fast, strong and accurate for him, decking an easy victory, as he had predicted.

Tatsuyoshi forfeited his belt on a 6th round KO by Veeraphol, being flattened with his vicious right shot in Osaka on December 29 of the previous year. So, this was his grudge fight. Tatsuyoshi said, "I was so careless and overconfident that I took him lightly. But, this time, I am very well-prepared and will win back the title by avenging the previous defeat."

But Veeraphol was superior in every respect. It was only in the opening canto that Tatsuyoshi could fight the shorter but physically stronger champ on even terms. The Japanese opened fireworks with a solid left-right combination and positively attacked the cool champ. Veeraphol retaliated with a very hard one-two combo and bounced his face off in the closing seconds of the first session.

The 30-year-old Veeraphol, formerly a Muay-thai (Thai national kick-boxing) superstar, displayed a brilliant control of the fight from the second round on, as he outjabbed him and connected with a solid left-right combo nearly at will.

The third watched Veeraphol make him quite groggy with a barrage of strong and accurate shots. Tatsuyoshi showed his determination and durability by refusing to go down despite his absorption of much punishment.

The Japanese took his distance in the 4th round to avert the champ's short but very effective punches, circling with seemingly rubbery-legs. But Veeraphol, in the 5th, caught him and had him at bay again with a fusillade of punches.

After dominating the 6th, Veeraphol went all out for a finish and battered him from all angles. Referee Richard Steele, from the US, finally declared a halt and held the falling Japanese with his hands. Tatsuyoshi then looked temporarily unconscious while still standing.

Scored after the 7th round-Lou Filippo (US) and Richard Flaharty (US) both 60-53, giving all rounds to the champ and scoring only the third session 10-8 , and Carol Castellano (US) 60-54, seeing Veeraphol take every round with a 10-9 score.

The lopsided triumph raised Veeraphol's mark to 23-1, 17 KOs. He once held a WBA bantam crown by dethroning a compatriot named Daorung MP Petroleum in 1995. But Veeraphol failed in his first defense, as he suffered a second round KO by Ghanan Nana Konadu despite dropping him in the opening session in Thailand in 1996. It's his sole defeat in his career. He registered 19 victories in a row with 14 within the distance.

Tatsuyoshi fell to 17-6-1, 12 KOs. He, after an amateur career of 18-1, 18 KOs, gained the WBC crown via 10th round TKO over Greg Richardson just in his 8th pro bout in 1991. He suffered a detached retina and underwent a surgery. He lost his title to Victor Rabanales on a 9th round TKO in 1992, but regained the vacant WBC interim title by beating Rabanales on points in 1993. He dropped an upset decision to compatriot and full WBC ruler Yasuei Yakushiji in 1994. Tatsuyoshi attempted to move up to the 122-pound division and win the WBC super-bantam crown only to lose to crafty Mexican lefty Daniel Zaragoza twice in 1996 and 1997. All thought Tatsuyoshi was finished, but this game fighter went on to regain the WBC bantam throne by disposing of previously unbeaten Thailander Sirimongkol Nakornthorn-Parkview in 7 upset rounds in Osaka in 1997. In his second defense, he lost to Veeraphol on a 6th round KO last December.

On the next day, Tatsuyoshi finally announced to hang up gloves for good. All fight fans praised his fighting and challenging career, having overcome a three-time optical surgery and also crucial defeats by Rabanales, Yakushiji, Zaragoza and Veeraphol. He was a very popular ringman, aggressive demon, despite his oft-castigated lack of defensive skill, and people loved his flamboyant personality and crowd-pleasing aggression.


Tough Korean JONGKIL KIM, WBC No.5 ranked contender, 139 3/4, retained his super-light title of the Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation (OPBF), as he floored Japanese lefty HISAO ARAI, 140, in the second round and lopsidedly battered him with persistent combos to prompt referee Bruce McTavish's intervention at 1:49 of the 7th round. Kim raised his ledger to 21-10-4, 15 KOs, and ex-national champ Arai dropped to 21-4-2, 15 KOs.

In a semi-final, bright prospect EIICHI SUGAMA, 125 1/2, caught Japanese-based Ugandan ISAAC SENTUWA, 124 1/2, and finished him at 2:07 of the 5th round in a supporting 10. Sugama, formerly a winner of All Japan Novice King tourney, is 14-1, 12 KOs. Sentuwa sagged to 7-2, 6 KOs.

Teiken Promotions. WBC supervisor: Major Lee Wonbok (Korea). (8-29-99)


Joe Koizumi
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