Ancajas challenges WBA king Inoue

Jerwin Ancajas
Jerwin Ancajas File Photo

FORMER world champion Jerwin Ancajas guns for his second division world title as he challenges World Boxing Association (WBA) bantamweight king Takuma Inoue on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2024, at the Kokugikan in Tokyo, Japan.

After a six-year reign as the International Boxing Federation (IBF) super flyweight champion, Ancajas is looking to become a world titleholder, this time in a different weight division.

The 32-year-old Ancajas had a dismal year in 2022 after losing his belt to Fernando Daniel Martinez by unanimous decision in Las Vegas, Nevada. He lost again to Fernandez by another lopsided unanimous decision in their rematch in that same year in Carson, California.

Ancajas went up a weight division last year and stopped veteran Wilner Soto in the fifth round in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Inoue, on the other hand, won the WBA bantamweight strap after beating Liborio Solis by unanimous decision last year in Japan.

Inoue also once held the interim World Boxing Council (WBC) bantamweight belt after a unanimous decision over Tasana Salapat in 2018. But he was defeated in his next fight in the hands of then WBC bantamweight king Nordine Oubaali in 2019. After the loss, Inoue worked his way back up the ladder and logged wins against Keita Kurihara, Shingo Wake, Gakuya Furuhashi and Jade Bornea.

Ancajas is 34-3-2 with 23 knockouts, while Inoue, the younger brother of lineal super bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue, is 18-1 with four knockouts.

Also seeing action in the same show is former world title challenger Jonas Sultan.

Sultan, a former ALA Boy, takes on Riku Masuda in an eight-rounder.

Sultan challenged Paul Butler for the interim WBO bantamweight belt in 2022 and lost by unanimous decision in Liverpool, England. He bounced back from that loss last year with a unanimous decision over Frank Gonzalez.

After winning his first three fights, Masuda suffered his first career defeat following a unanimous decision defeat to promising Japanese Seiya Tsutsumi.

Sultan is 19-6 with 11 knockouts, while Masuda is 3-1 with three knockouts.

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