• Kyodo


Ryoichi Taguchi will put his WBA light flyweight title on the line next month, his Watanabe Gym announced Wednesday.

Taguchi will make his sixth title defense at Ota Gymnasium on July 23 against Colombia’s Robert Barrera as part of a world title fight doubleheader. Also on the card, Hiroto Kyoguchi, the Orient Pacific minimumweight champ, will take on IBF minimumweight champion Jose Argumedo of Mexico.

“I want to fight well and win,” said the 30-year-old Taguchi, who is looking beyond to a unification bout against Japanese WBO champ Kosei Tanaka. “After I clear this hurdle then I want a unification fight.”

Taguchi is 25-2 with two draws, and 11 wins by knockout, while Barrera is 18-1 with 12 KOs.

Kyoguchi, meanwhile, wasn’t looking any farther than his first title fight.

“I’m going to score a knockout and be world champion,” said the 23-year-old, who is 7-0 in his career with six KOs.

Argumedo is 20-3 with a draw and 12 KOs.

Former WBA super flyweight champ Kohei Kono will also have a comeback fight on the same day.

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