Sana Kawano, Reito Tsutsumi and Sho Patrick Usami continued their gold medal series in the Japanese National Sports Festival

The 73rd edition of the Japanese National Sports Festival was held in Fukui where the youth and elite boxers could fight for the titles. Seventeen winners have been crowned among the 246 participants in the Japanese National Sports Festival in Fukui where experienced Sana Kawano, Reito Tsutsumi, Sho Patrick Usami, Tosho Kashiwazaki, Shota Hayashida, Subaru Murata, Kenji Fujita and Ren Umemura proved their bests.
Japan’s boxing life turned into a new era in 2012 when Ryota Murata claimed gold medal and one year later the country received the right to host the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Their boxers have been preparing hard to the upcoming Olympic Games and the country’s boxing life is even stronger than in the last decade.
The first gold medal of the event was achieved by Shizuoka’s Sana Kawano who defeated Self Defense Force Sport School’s promising Mizuki Hiruta in the final of the women’s flyweight (51kg). Among the favourites Tsukimi Namiki lost his semi-final while AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Madoka Wada and ASBC Asian Confederation Women’s Boxing Championships bronze medallist Tsubasa Komura did not get any medals in the Japanese National Sports Festival.
Kagoshima’s Japanese Interscholastic Athletic Meeting gold medallist Kazuma Aratake continued his winning path and defeated Gifu’s Tsubasa Ogawa in the first youth final in Fukui. Osaka’s Shogo Tanaka controlled his final fight against Tokyo’s Kyosuke Takami and won the title of the light flyweight (49kg).
Hiroshima’s Arashi Kajihara won the Japanese Interscholastic Athletic Meeting and he was able to beat his main rivals such as Rento Kawano and Shunnosuke Hiratsuka in the road to the gold of the youth flyweight (52kg). Kazuki Anaguchi moved up one category and attended in the bantamweight (56kg) in Fukui where his technical skills were too much for Ehime’s Issei Ochiai in the final.
Chiba’s defending ASBC Asian Junior Champion 16-year-old Reito Tsutsumi was too strong for Hyogo’s Kenshin Yamamura the semi-final of the lightweight (60kg) but for the gold medal he had to do his very best against Osaka’s Riku Kiya. Reito Tsutsumi’s elder brother ASBC Asian Confederation Youth Boxing Championships bronze medallist Ryunosuke Tsutsumi achieved also only bronze medal as Kenshin Yamamura.
Chiba’s next gold medallist in the event was Reito Takahashi who stopped Jin Imamura in the semi-final and defeated Kagoshima’s Gento Uchimura in the final of the light welterweight (64kg). Osaka’s AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Sho Patrick Usami won the welterweight (69kg) after beating Hiroshima’s Jojiro Kuroda. The last youth favourite of the event Tokyo’s Daigo Sunaga also dominated his category in Fukui.
Fukui’s first gold medal was achieved by former ASBC Asian Confederation Boxing Championships bronze medallist Tosho Kashiwazaki who defeated Kumamoto’s Yudai Shigeoka in the final of the men’s elite light flyweight (49kg). Another well experienced boxer Wakayama’s Incheon 2014 Asian Games bronze medallist Shota Hayashida claimed the second elite title in the Japanese National Sports Festival following his success over Tokyo’s Jukiya Iimura at the flyweight (52kg).
Wakayama’s Nihon University student and Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympian Subaru Murata won his first big elite event at the bantamweight (56kg) where he was too smart for Iwate’s Kota Sasaki. Okayama’s Amman 2013 ASBC Asian Confederation Boxing Championships bronze medallist Kenji Fujita returned in top shape and after two poor years he claimed the gold medal at the lightweight (60kg) defeating Thailand Open International Boxing Tournament bronze medallist Rentaro Kimura.
Saitama’s Asian Student Championships bronze medallist Yuta Akiyama impressed in the final of the elite light welterweight (64kg) and defeated Shizuoka’s Masahiro Tomita by large margin of differences. The next gold medal for Saitama was delivered by national team member Hiroaki Kinjo who triumphed over Ehime’s Kaito Hino in the final of the elite welterweight (69kg).
Iwate’s Ren Umemura attended in three Asian and two World events in the recent five years therefore his success over Kagoshima’s Yuya Tanaka was not a surprise at the elite middleweight (75kg). Fukui’s Mitsuro Brandon Tajima claimed gold medal at the 2015 Japanese National Championships and following his performance he won the light heavyweight (81kg) in the National Sports Festival after beating Okinawa’s Julian Johnson.

List of the winners in the Japanese National Sports Festival
Women’s Elite 51kg: Sana Kawano
Men’s Youth 46kg: Kazuma Aratake
Men’s Youth 49kg: Shogo Tanaka
Men’s Youth 52kg: Arashi Kajihara
Men’s Youth 56kg: Kazuki Anaguchi
Men’s Youth 60kg: Reito Tsutsumi
Men’s Youth 64kg: Reito Takahashi
Men’s Youth 69kg: Sho Patrick Usami
Men’s Youth 75kg: Daigo Sunaga
Men’s Elite 49kg: Tosho Kashiwazaki
Men’s Elite 52kg: Shota Hayashida
Men’s Elite 56kg: Subaru Murata
Men’s Elite 60kg: Kenji Fujita
Men’s Elite 64kg: Yuta Akiyama
Men’s Elite 69kg: Hiroaki Kinjo
Men’s Elite 75kg: Ren Umemura
Men’s Elite 81kg: Mitsuro Brandon Tajima

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