General Santos City native takes on Japanese champion

JOURNEYMAN Roland Jay Biendima is looking for an upset Saturday, May 20, 2023, as he takes on two-division world champion Hiroto Kyoguchi in a 10-rounder at the Sumida City Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan.

The 27-year-old Biendima is known for his toughness. He’s only been stopped twice in his career, a ninth-round technical knockout in the hands of Chinese Wulan Tuolehazi in 2019 and a first-round knockout by world-ranked Christian Araneta in 2020.

Biendima, a native of General Santos City, has fought some elite names in the lower weight classes like Jade Bornea, Samuel Salva, Jayson Mama and Aston Palicte.

Biendima dropped his last two contests, losing to Tetsuro Ohashi by unanimous decision in Japan last year and to Thananchai Charunphak also by unanimous decision in a World Boxing Council (WBC) Asian flyweight championship bout in Thailand.

The 29-year-old Kyoguchi dominated the minimumweight and light flyweight division for years. He became a world champion in just his eighth fight after a one-sided unanimous decision against Jose Argumendo to win the International Boxing Federation in Japan in 2017. He defended his belt twice before moving up in weight for his second division world title.

Kyoguchi scored a 10th-round technical knockout of Hekkie Budler to win the World Boxing Association light flyweight strap in 2018. He had four successful title defenses before attempting to unify two titles last year.

Kyoguchi booked a unification title bout with fellow Japanese star Kenshiro Teraji, who held the WBC light flyweight belt. He was stopped by Teraji in seven rounds in Saitama, Japan and suffered his first career loss.

Biendima is 17-13-1 with 10 knockouts, while Kyoguchi is 16-1 with 11 knockouts. (EKA)