TOKYO - On Thursday, two-and-a-half weeks since his controversial loss to interim champion Hassan N’Dam in a WBA middleweight world title bout at Ariake Colosseum, the 31-year-old Ryota Murata resumed training for the first time at his Teiken gym.
Murata lost by split decision to the Cameroonian-French fighter, with many people around the world criticizing the scoring. But he has not cursed at anyone, saying the result is beyond his control. Murata returned to the gym with a positive, forward-looking attitude.
“The judges did what judges do, and people made a lot of comments on the fight,” Murata said before his training. “But I’m only thinking of what I should do to get stronger. Judging is not my job. I will make every effort to win the belt that I could not claim."
His decision to continue his career comes after World Boxing Association president Gilberto Jesus Mendoza ordered a rematch and suspended two judges for six months over their scoring of the bout.
"I feel happy that I can box," said Murata. "I think I have gained a little bit of world recognition and feel I am getting closer to the dream of a big fight in Las Vegas. Once again, that is what I want to aim for."
Teiken Gym representative Tsuyoshi Hamada said, "The page is blank and we will talk about which direction we will move in and with which boxing organization from now on."
The Nara native said that though he took his first professional loss, he gained valuable experience during the fight. More importantly, he was able to measure himself as a pro fighter.
“I wasn’t sure how good I was and how well I would fare at the global level (before the N’Dam match),” said Murata, whose record as a pro is 12-1 (nine knockouts). “I’d say maybe I was 70 percent sure how good I was. But now, through the fight, I’ve gotten to know things like, ‘I could’ve done this, I should’ve done this.’ There’s a lot of things that I’ve had to reflect on. The only disappointment that I had was the fact that I didn’t end up getting the belt in my hands. Yet there was nothing that I feel slipped out of my hands. There were only gains for me.”
“In the fifth, seventh and ninth rounds, I gave him damage that almost knocked him down. But I did not go (further). It probably came from my respect for him that I knew that he would come right back at you, punching even right after he gets some damage. But looking back, I probably should’ve gone for (a knockout).”
“Maybe I wasn’t ready (because) I didn’t have enough stamina to do it. But whether it’s against N’Dam or anyone else, I’ve got to be able to attack when I have a chance. To realize a world title fight for me, it required a great amount of effort. So I can’t easily say, ‘I want to fight this guy.’ I’ll fight anyone I’m given and I’ll just do the best I can given the circumstances.”