The stage is set for a rematch that promises to be an exciting encounter for boxing fans worldwide. Japan's former WBO super flyweight world champion, Kazuto Ioka, will face the current WBA champion Joshua Franco of the United States in a highly anticipated rematch of their recent world title unification bout.
Ioka's gym officially announced the fight on Monday at a press conference, much to the delight of boxing fans across the globe. The fight is scheduled to take place on June 24 at Tokyo's Ota City General Gymnasium, which is the same venue where the pair battled to a twelve-round draw on New Year's Eve.
Following the draw, the World Boxing Organization ordered Ioka to make a mandatory defense against his countryman, Junto Nakatani. However, Ioka chose to vacate his title to have a rematch with Franco, as settling things with his opponent was of utmost importance to him.
Speaking at the press conference, Ioka said, "Fighting a title defense was not an option for us at all. The point is to carry on the fight from last year in the next bout and settle the matter with [Franco]."
Franco, who is the older brother of world champion Jesse 'Bam Rodriguez,' expressed his excitement for the rematch and his motivation to come out on top this time. "My motivation is higher than it was in December, and I'm expecting a heated encounter," he said.
Ioka boasts an impressive record of 29-2-1, with 15 wins by knockout, while Franco has a record of 18-1-3, with eight wins by knockout. The rematch promises to be a closely contested affair, with both fighters determined to emerge victorious and set the record straight.
With the fight just a few weeks away, boxing fans can hardly wait to witness what promises to be an unforgettable encounter between two of the world's best boxers. The stage is set, and the world is watching, as Ioka and Franco go head-to-head to determine who will emerge as the undisputed champion.