Erika Kamimura successfully reclaimed the vacant WPMF Women’s Mini Flyweight Championship tonight with a commanding stoppage victory at RISE/M-1MC: “Infinity” in Tokyo, Japan. Kamimura knocked out 16-year-old opponent Lomar Lookboonmee, a veteran of 121 fights, in the third round.
In other action on the card, former Shoot Boxing Japan Women’s Flyweight Champion Ai Takahashi rebounded from a loss to Mizuki Inoue in August by stopping Itsuka Yokose under kickboxing rules. Takahashi overwhelmed Yokose with punches in round three to earn an impressive TKO victory.
Kamimura (26-3-0 KB/SB) opened round one with left hooks and she mixed up her strikes by targeting the body until Lookboonmee (98-23-0) clinched. The fighters traded knees in close and Kamimura broke free with more left hands. She began to land more powerful shots in the final 30 seconds and all three judges scored the first round 10-9 in Kamimura’s favour.
In round two, Kamimura again targeted the body in the early goings, but Lookboonmee had much more success in close. She first threw a head kick and then trapped Kamimura in the clinch for a prolonged period of time. Lookboonmee landed short strikes in the clinch, but Kamimura managed to create enough space to land a head kick of her own late in the close round. Two judges saw it even at 10-10, while a third scored it 10-9 for Lookboonmee.
Lookboonmee clinched again in round three and looked to continue her success from the second stanza with more knees, but Kamimura fought free with a flurry of punches. She landed a right hook to the body and a quick one-two, then floored Lookboonmee with a right cross. Lookboonmee was unable to answer a 10 count and the fight was stopped, giving Kamimura a big win and the vacant title, which she first held back in September 2009.
Tonight’s victory got Kamimura back on track after a disappointing showing in this year’s Shooto Boxing Girls S-Cup tournament. Kamimura, who won the Girls S-Cup in 2011, was upset in the opening round of the 2012 tournament in August.
Winner: Erika Kamimura by KO (Punch) at 1:21 of round three. She improves her combined kickboxing and shoot boxing record to 26-3-0 and once again becomes the WPMF Women’s Mini Flyweight Champion.
Takahashi (13-4-0 KB/SB) displayed strong boxing skills in the opening round of her bout with Yokose (3-5-0). She threw very few kicks in round one and instead stuck to crisp punching combinations that kept Yokose on the defensive. Yokose landed left hooks of her own, but Takahashi held the edge in the striking exchanges.
It was more of the same in round two and Takahashi continued to outstrike her less experienced foe. Yokose countered with punches when she could, but it was Takahashi who was pressing the action. She dropped Yokose early in round three and continued to batter her with punches until the referee intervened to stop the fight and rescued Yokose from any further punishment.
Like Kamimura, Takahashi has also struggled in recent fights, but she now gets back on the winning track with the sixth stoppage victory of her career.
Winner: Ai Takahashi by TKO (Punches) at 1:30 of round three. She improves her combined kickboxing and shoot boxing record to 13-4-0.
(Photo Credit: RISE)