What next for Ryota Murata after his brutal stoppage of Steven Butler?

News | 7 hours ago

Rob Brant? Chris Eubank Jr? Canelo Alvarez? Weighing up Murata’s likely next move

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Naoki Fukuda

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FOURTEEN months ago, 2012 Olympic gold medallist Ryota Murata suffered a wide unanimous points defeat at the hands of the unfancied Rob Brant. The unexpected reverse was Murata’s second of his career, having been on the wrong end of a highly controversial split decision against Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam in May 2017 – a loss he avenged via seventh-round retirement five months later.

Just as he did against N’Jikam, Murata gained revenge over Brant when the pair met in a return bout in July of this year. The Japanese middleweight star put in an explosive performance, with Brant having no answer to the heavy-handed, two-fisted bombardment coming his way. The end came in only the second round.

In his second appearance
of 2019, this past Monday (December 23) in his home country, Murata carried on
from where he left off in the Brant rematch. The Tokyo-based 33-year-old scored
another dominant stoppage, this time against the game but ultimately outgunned Steven
Butler.

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