Takashi Uchiyama, Japan’s “KO Dynamite,” looked relaxed as usual on Tuesday, even with his 12th consecutive WBA super featherweight title defense at stake the next day.

Uchiyama (24-0-1) will take on Panama’s Jezreel Corrales (19-1) on Wednesday night at Ota City General Gymnasium, while fellow Watanabe Gym fighters Kohei Kono and Ryoichi Taguchi also defend their titles at the same venue.

“I feel great as always and I would like to get in the ring to fight,” the 36-year-old Uchiyama, who has been given the title of “super champion” by the WBA, said on Tuesday.

“I’m not dwelling on (the 12th consecutive title defense) too much. I’m focusing on winning tomorrow’s fight.”

Former WBA light flyweight champion Yoko Gushiken holds the record for a Japanese fighter defending his world title consecutive times at 13.

For the 24-year-old Corrales, the WBA interim super featherweight champ, this will be his first fight overseas. He earned the interim title with a win over Juan Antonio Rodriguez last December.

“I appreciate this opportunity,” Corrales said through an interpreter. “I would certainly like to take advantage of this chance. I would like to get in the ring with Uchiyama soon and dance salsa after the fight (with a win).”

Corrales actually didn’t make the weight limit (58.9 kg) at his first attempt, missing by 400 grams at the official weigh-in. He went out to a nearby public bath and shed weight by jumping rope and taking a sauna during the two hours he was given. Eventually, he made the weight.

After a victory over Nicaragua’s Oliver Flores on New Year’s Eve last year, Uchiyama was expected to land a much-craved big fight in the United States. Watanabe Gym sought bouts with star fighters such as former WBA featherweight champion Nicholas Walters and current WBA super featherweight champ Javier Fortuna, but their negotiations came to nothing.

Because of that, some worry about Uchiyama’s mental state. Uchiyama said when the Corrales fight was set that his motivation went down, though on Tuesday he was focused on beating the Panamanian.

“I want to send him down to the canvas,” Uchiyama said, when asked if he wanted to finish the fight with a knockout. “Even if it goes to a decision, I want to win clearly, not giving him any chances.”

Of his 24 wins, Uchiyama has posted 20 knockout victories, which has made him one of the most popular boxers with Japanese fans.

Meanwhile, WBA super flyweight champion Kono (31-8-1), who sent countryman Koki Kameda into retirement with a win in Chicago last fall, will take on Thailand’s Inthanon Sithchamuang (28-7-1).

WBA light flyweight champion Taguchi (23-2-1) will box against former WBA minimumweight interim champion Juan Landaeta (27-8-1), who currently belongs to a gym in Toyama.

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