Kenshiro Teraji defeated Carlos Canizales by a razor-thin majority decision in an entertaining fight to retain his junior flyweight titles Tuesday in Osaka, Japan.
One judge scored it a draw (113-113) but the other two had the Japanese fighter winning by the same tally (114-112).
Teraji (23-1, 14 KOs) got off to a good start, putting Canizales (26-2-1, 19 KOs) down in Round 2. However, the Venezuelan challenger returned the favor in Round 3 and neither man was able to separate from the other the rest of the way in a back-and-forth war.
Teraji has won five consecutive fights since an upset knockout loss to countryman Masamichi Yabuki in 2021, including in a rematch with Yabuki.
He has said he plans to move up to 112 pounds if he can’t get another title-unification bout at 108. He has said he’d like to challenge 112-pound beltholder “Bam” Rodriguez.
Canizales has now come up short in two world title fights. He was stopped by then-beltholder Esteban Bermudez in 2021.