Milan Melindo: ‘Destroy Ryoichi Taguchi’ Ryoichi Taguchi Confident He Can Deal With Melindo’s Power, Ryoichi Taguchi vs Milan Melindo unification set for December 31 watch now.
Bundled in winter clothes and wearing a surgical mask through Narita Airport, Milan Melindo arrived in Tokyo, Japan, on Tuesday afternoon, ahead of his title unification fight this Sunday against Ryoichi Taguchi. The first thing on his mind wasn’t strategy or checking into his hotel. “I’m just looking for food,” said Melindo (37-2, 13 knockouts), the IBF junior flyweight titleholder, who will meet the WBA claimant.
Taguchi (26-2-2, 12 KOs), on New Year’s Eve, at Ota-City General Gymnasium. “I don’t need to think about the fight. I only need to focus on it the day of the fight. No stress, no thinking about stuff. For now I’m just focused to the day when I get my weight.” Taguchi (26-2-2) has been focused on his seventh title defense since learning he would face Melindo in a unification match on New Year’s Eve at Ota City General Gymnasium. Melindo (37-2) will be putting his IBF light flyweight title on the line after taking the belt from Akira Yaegashi with a stunning first-round technical knockout in Tokyo in May.
Melindo (37-2, 13 KO) is a Filipino fighter who was a flyweight contender before moving down in weight in 2014. He unsuccessfully challenged Javier Mendoza for the IBF belt in 2015, and won the interim title against Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr in November 2016. In May of this year, Melindo gained full title recognition by defeating Akira Yaegashi in Japan, and defended in Cebu City, Philippines, in September, defeating Hekkie Budler by split decision. The IBF 105-pound title will also be on the line on this card.