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Old 06-13-2008, 04:34 PM   #1
Raging B(_)LL
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Default Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away
June 12th, 2008
By Jim Amato
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photo courtesy David Martinez private collection
World Flyweight Championship / Tokyo, Japan / June 27, 1961
Mitsunori Seki (left) loses 15 round split decision to Pone Kingpetch

I recently learned that one of Japanís first great boxers, Mitsunori Seki passed away. He was the victim of a brain hemorrhage at the age of 66. Seki was good enough to challenge for a world title no less then five times during the 1960ís.

Seki first attempted to win the flyweight title from Thailandís Pone Kingpetch. On this occasion Seki lost a close decision. Seki would move up to bantamweight but he met disaster at the hands of Mexicoís Joe Medal who stopped him in five. Seki then entered the featherweight division and eventually earned a shot at champion Sugar Ramos. The talented Ramos proved to be too much for Seki and retained his crown. Ramos would later lose his championship to the great Vincente Saldivar. Seki would get yet another chance as he met Saldivar. It was a tough fight but Saldivar would retain his title. It was close enough to justify a rematch so Saldivar and Seki went at it again. This time Saldivar proved he was the best featherweight in the world.

Saldivar would then relinquish the title after defeating Howard Winstone and the WBC matched Seki with Winstone for the vacated crown. Seki would lose by a controversial stoppage thus failing in his fifth attempt at world honors. Seki would retire with an outstanding 61-11-1 record. He scored 35 knockouts. Seki along with Hiroyuki Ebihara, the great Fighting Harada and others helped follow 1950ís flyweight titlist Yoshio Shirai in establishing Japan as a force to be reckoned with in the world of boxing. At the time of his death Seki was a successful and respected trainer. May he rest in peace.
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Old 06-13-2008, 04:46 PM   #2
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

I know most folks here have probably never heard of Seki before today, but he was a very good and well schooled boxer who while he ultimately came up short in his title bids always acquitted himself well even in defeat. His first fight against Saldivar (in which he dropped the champion in the 3rd round) was in my opinion the most difficult fight the Mexican had as champ, so that should give an idea to people here just how good Seki was to give a HOF`er like Saldivar such a hard time. His stoppage loss against Howard Winstone was most unfortunate as well as the cut that prompted the stoppage did not look that bad at all, and the fight was still very much in the balance. If anyone here hasn`t seen Seki in action before, his two fights against Saldivar are readily available and I would suggest to anyone who would like to see him in action to get a hold of those two fights.
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Old 06-13-2008, 05:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

R.I.P Mitsunori Seki I was just watching a documentry on Howard Winston and it showed his match against Seki.
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Old 06-13-2008, 06:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

R.i.p.
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Old 06-13-2008, 07:47 PM   #5
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

In watching Saldivar v Seki what I remember most is the heart Seki showed down the stretch. He started off well, dropping Saldivar and nearly having him out, but then Saldivar recovered and started to dominate the middle rounds. I thought Seki would be eventually stopped, but in the last couple of rounds he somehow miraculouly halted the momentum of the fight with such a fury, even when in obvious distress, that I really was in awe.

Where did he get that spirit to fire back after looking so thoroughly beaten in the middle to late rounds?

Some might think yeah big deal, Saldivar stepped off the pedal and Seki nabbed a few rounds when the fight was done and decided already. But you need to watch that fight to understand how unlikely the fight back was.

Credit to him for that, and for the rest of his career. Would have held multiple belts in todays ABC age.
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Old 06-14-2008, 09:32 AM   #6
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweet_scientist
In watching Saldivar v Seki what I remember most is the heart Seki showed down the stretch. He started off well, dropping Saldivar and nearly having him out, but then Saldivar recovered and started to dominate the middle rounds. I thought Seki would be eventually stopped, but in the last couple of rounds he somehow miraculouly halted the momentum of the fight with such a fury, even when in obvious distress, that I really was in awe.

Where did he get that spirit to fire back after looking so thoroughly beaten in the middle to late rounds?

Some might think yeah big deal, Saldivar stepped off the pedal and Seki nabbed a few rounds when the fight was done and decided already. But you need to watch that fight to understand how unlikely the fight back was.

Credit to him for that, and for the rest of his career. Would have held multiple belts in todays ABC age.
Indeed S_S, Seki showed a ton of heart in that first fight. You could tell that he really wanted that title and he wasn`t going to let Vicente run over him down the stretch, instead he fought him tooth and nail and even took the fight to him at times late in the fight. In my opinion that first meeting shows Seki at his best even though he lost, but in the rematch it was Saldivar who never looked better as he sought to erase all doubts as to his status as the ruler of his division. He gave Seki a one-sided beating for the better part of those 7 rounds and Seki simply couldn`t do anything about it, but in fairness to him I think that first war with the Mexican took something out of him for the rest of his career and he was never the same afterwards. BTW, look for your dvds to arrive sometime this coming week, and let me know what you think of Seki after viewing his bout against Kingpetch.
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Old 06-14-2008, 04:55 PM   #7
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

I know him as a very good fighter, but honestly more as the man Winstone beat for the belt finally.
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Old 06-14-2008, 05:30 PM   #8
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweet Pea
I know him as a very good fighter, but honestly more as the man Winstone beat for the belt finally.
Agreed, but that's not to discredit his ability in anyway. Very good fighter. R.I.P
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Old 06-14-2008, 05:46 PM   #9
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Default Re: Five Time World Title Challenger Mitsunori Seki Passes Away

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Originally Posted by Raging B(_)LL
Indeed S_S, Seki showed a ton of heart in that first fight. You could tell that he really wanted that title and he wasn`t going to let Vicente run over him down the stretch, instead he fought him tooth and nail and even took the fight to him at times late in the fight. In my opinion that first meeting shows Seki at his best even though he lost, but in the rematch it was Saldivar who never looked better as he sought to erase all doubts as to his status as the ruler of his division. He gave Seki a one-sided beating for the better part of those 7 rounds and Seki simply couldn`t do anything about it, but in fairness to him I think that first war with the Mexican took something out of him for the rest of his career and he was never the same afterwards. BTW, look for your dvds to arrive sometime this coming week, and let me know what you think of Seki after viewing his bout against Kingpetch.
Cheers RB, will do.

Yeah it's totally understandable that Seki left some of himself out there in the ring that night. That was one hell of a last stand.

And likewise, expect your fights in a week or two mate

Last edited by sweet_scientist; 06-14-2008 at 06:34 PM.
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