Melindo Vows To Take Down Ryoichi Taguchi in Unification Bout

On New Year’s Eve, both IBF world light flyweight champion Milan “El Metodico” Melindo (37-2-0, 13KOs) and WBA world light flyweight champion Ryoichi Taguchi (26-2-2, 12KOs) will get a crack at unifying both titles for the first time when they face each other in a unification clash in Japan.

While the fight could go as just another one of Taguchi’s title defenses, it could very well bring Melindo a step closer to his goal of dominating the 108-pound division.

Having held the WBA strap since 2014, the Japanese world champion has successfully defended his title six times, with 5 wins and a draw against the undefeated Carlos Canizales of Venezuela.

Taguchi has also been undefeated since 2013.


Melindo, on the other hand, had just won the IBF title from Taguchi’s fellow countryman, Akira Yaegashi, in May of this year. After falling short in two previous world title matches against Juan Francisco Estrada in 2013 and Javier Mendoza in 2015, Melindo delivered an impressive 1st round TKO win in front of a Japanese-dominated audience in Tokyo.

By September of the same year and barely four months after, Melindo took on and won – a split decision- over two-division world champion Hekkie Budler in his first title defense.

During simultaneous press conferences held in the Philippines and Japan on November 17, both Melindo and Taguchi expressed their excitement in the upcoming fight.

In a report published, Kyodo News quoted Taguchi saying, “I want a resounding win that will make this card an amazing one.”

For his part, 29-year old Melindo continues to prepare for this huge match before he and his team leave for Japan on Dec. 26th.

“I am confident with my training after my fight with Budler,” the Cagayan-native Melindo shared.

“I am very happy I’ve been given this fight, because this is what I’ve been waiting for.  I want to go down in history as the undisputed light flyweight king. Although I know Taguchi will not be an easy opponent, I will do what I can to make sure I put up a good fight so I could win.”

“I still have two more belts to go after,” he added, referring to the WBO and WBC titles currently held by Puerto Rican Angel Acosta and Japanese Ken Shiro respectively.

The Melindo-Taguchi IBF/WBA unification title is for the Ota-City General Gymnasium in Tokyo.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by asgarth on 12-29-2017

Is it a mistake by boxrec or are they really fighting for a new wba SUPER title? I thought they wanted to get rid of the belt. I know it takes a long time and it was alright as long…

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (1)
Top Headlines Frank Warren on Frampton's Future, Tete's Lack of Fireworks Peter McDonagh Back From Ban, May 12 In Bolton De La Hoya: Canelo Will Wail on Golovkin For That Bullsh*t Ad! Vanes: My Wife's Fav Fighter is GGG - Now I Have To Beat His Ass Wilder To Serve as Honorary Pace Car Driver at GEICO 500 Jacobs Reflects on Charlo Confrontation, Building Superstar Run Carlos Cuadras Enters Rehab To Deal With Drug Issues Loeffler's Hollywood Fight Night Series Returns on May 22 Photos: Lomachenko Putting in Work For Linares Showdown Keith Thurman Explains Why He Vacated The WBC World Title Chocolatito Appears Unlikely For Golovkin-Vanes Card Jessie Vargas Would Fight Broner in Texas - Rejects Idea of Ohio Saunders: Even if Canelo Beats GGG - He's Still a Cheat To Me News: Matias vs. Estrella Set, Zuhayr Al-Qahtani, Castillo, Villa Photos: Gary Russell, Joseph Diaz - Go Face To Face at Presser Mikey Garcia vs. Robert Easter Unification Next, Says Sulaiman Keith Thurman Vacates WBC Title, Garcia-Porter Ordered Luis Ortiz vs. Dillian Whyte - WBC Final Eliminator Ordered Hearn: Daniel Jacobs Likes The Jermall Charlo Fight Golovkin: 'We'll See' About Having Canelo Rematch in September Adonis Stevenson: I Look Forward To Knocking Badou Jack Out! Broner-Vargas Telecast Peaked at 891,000 Viewers on Showtime Murray: Warren Does My Head In, Must Stop GGG-Saunders Talk Lewis Ritson vs. Paul Hyland, Josh Kelly vs. Kris George - June 16 Claressa Shields vs. Hanna Gabriels Set For June 22, Showtime Dmitry Bivol's Future Plans are Detailed By His Manager Malignaggi Definitely Wants To See a Broner-Vargas Rematch Charlo Wants to Test Himself Against Golovkin 'On the Way Out' Jessie Vargas-Adrien Broner: Afterthoughts Bellew: I'm Ready For War, Ready To Beat David Haye at All Costs Liam Cameron Warns Jenman That He's in For a Real Hard Night Joseph Parker Ready To Face Dillian Whyte To Get Back on Top Horn's Promoter Rips Top Rank For Approaching Crawford-Khan Bellew Fears That it May Take a Death For Boxing To Tackle PEDs Adrien Broner's Post-Fight Antics Create Yet Another Black Cloud GGG Promoter: We Feel Vanes Has Better Credentials Than Spike Francisco Vargas Pushing Hard To Secure Berchelt Rematch Golovkin: Vanes is Not an Easy Fight, This is a Real Guy Photos: Golovkin, Martirosyan - Square-Up at Media Workout Gary Russell: I Don't See Joseph Diaz Fight Being a Long Night

Latest Active Forum Threads