October 7th 2018: By Aaron Cooper
Wow. Just Wow. Naoya Inoue is truly something special. ‘The Monster’ stopping opponent Juan Carlos Payano in the opening round.
Fighting in front of a hometown crowd in Yokohama, Japan. The spectacle was grand. As we have come to expect from the organizers of the World Boxing Super Series. I’m not entirely sure, however, that the boxing public could have predicted quite what happened next.
After the lengthy introductions that we have become accustomed to in the series. It was Payano who come out chasing the action. Moving around the ring, trying to establish a jab to the head and body. He landed too. That was the end however of his night. As he moved in to attack once more. Inoue, who had spent the opening minute of the fight with his jab hand cocked as if to parry any incoming shots. Launched into a left hand followed by a huge right that dropped Payano on his back. Out on his feet, out of the fight.
Inoue claimed his seventeenth win as a professional. Retained the WBA ‘regular’ bantamweight crown he took from Jamie McDonnell in his last fight and moved onto the semi-finals of the World Boxing Super Series. Where he will fight the winner of Jason Moloney’s mandatory challenge of the IBF world bantamweight title against the champion. Emmanuel Rodriguez.
Is there anyone in the tournament that could possibly halt the 25-year-old’s meteoric rise? It certainly doesn’t look like it at present.