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WBC flyweight champ Higa sets sights on greater notoriety

Kyodo

Daigo Higa said becoming the WBC flyweight champion last month has given him more to fight for as he resumed training on Friday.

“Becoming a world champion has given me more goals,” Higa, who scored a sixth-round technical knockout of Mexican Juan Hernandez on May 20, told a news conference. “I want my name to be more widely recognized.”

Higa, who has a record of 13-0 (13 knockouts), picked fighting WBA fly champion Kazuto Ioka in a unification bout and claiming the national record of 15 straight KOs as two targets he is looking to achieve.

Higa, 21, was given a hero’s welcome in his native Okinawa after his title win and a victory parade was held for him in Miyakojima.

“Lots of people congratulated me and it (becoming champion) really sunk in,” he said.

Higa’s gym chief Yoko Gushiken said, “I was delighted and watched it (Higa’s title fight) on video over 50 times. There are a lot of people looking forward to it so I want to get him to fight Ioka.”

Higa’s first title defense is scheduled to be held before the end of the year.