P4P countdown: No 9: Shinsuke Yamanaka
Luke G. Williams
Over the course of this week, Boxing Monthly online is counting down our latest pound for pound top ten, based on the votes of a panel comprising ten of our writers. Today we reveal the man who came ninth...
Name: Shinsuke Yamanaka
BM online P4P ranking: 9th (new entry since last December)
Fight record: 27(19)-0-2
Report card: A surprise entry, perhaps, given that Yamanaka has only fought once since our last ratings, a comfortable seven-round destruction of Carlos Carlson in March. Impressively this victory represented the Japanese icon's 12th successive defence of his WBC bantamweight world title. However, memories are also still fresh, of course, of Yamanaka's thrilling stoppage of Panamanian rival Anselmo Moreno last September.
Prospects for the rest of 2017: Next up for Yamanaka is an August showdown with hard-hitting 22-year-old Mexican contender Luis Nery (23(17)-0), who is currently ranked the fourth best bantam in the world by Boxing Monthly. If he gets through that test, then it would be refreshing to see Yamanaka forsake home comforts and have his first professional contest outside of Japan against one of the division's other titlists (Jamie McDonnell, Ryan Burnett, Zolani Tete or Zhanat Zhakiyanov).
Total points from BM P4P ranking panel: 16 - Half of our panel ranked Yamanaka in their top tens, enabling him to jump ahead of compatriot Naoya Inoue (13 points) and Sergey Kovalev (15 points) and snatch ninth place. His highest ranking in any of our top tens was fifth.
NB: Voting panel for the BM online P4P rankings were: Mark Butcher, Luke Byron, Luke G. Williams, Andrew Harrison, Paul Zanon, James Oddy, Chris Williamson, Callum Rudge, Michael Montero and Martin Chesnutt.
Each panellist ranked their top ten in order, with the boxer placed first receiving ten points, second nine points, third eight points and so on. Boxers were then ranked by the overall number of points accrued.