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KJ Cataraja is WBO’s No. 1 super flyweight contender

By: Glendale G. Rosal - Multimedia Correspondent - CDN Digital | April 16,2024 - 03:45 PM

KJ Cataraja is WBO's No. 1 super flyweight contender. In photo is KJ Cataraja. | Sanman photo

KJ Cataraja. | Sanman photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Unbeaten Cebuano prospect, Kevin Jake “KJ” Cataraja’s dream of fighting for a world title is within reach.

It was after Cataraja had been elevated as the No. 1 contender in the World Boxing Organization (WBO) in its latest rankings in the super flyweight division. 

It means that Cataraja is next in line to fight WBO world super flyweight champion and three-division world champion Kosei Tanaka. 


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Cataraja has been highly ranked in the WBO in recent years but hasn’t been allowed to occupy the top spot until this month.

If given the opportunity, Cataraja will face a familiar foe in Tanaka who is one of the Japanese world champions who proactively hires him as a sparring partner.

To recall, Cataraja became popular not just for his prowess inside the ring, but for being an in-demand sparring partner for Japan’s top world champions.

One of his sparring partners there happened to be Tanaka. Aside from Tanaka, Cataraja was also hired by other world champions in Riyuya Yamanaka, Australian Andrew Moloney, and countryman Johnriel Casimero.

The most popular world champion that hired Cataraja was the undisputed super bantamweight world champion Naoya Inoue. 


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The 28-year-old Cataraja of Tabuelan, northwest Cebu is undefeated in 17 fights with 13 knockouts. He is a former WBO Youth and OPBF super flyweight champion. 

His most recent bout was against Jun Blazo at Midas Hotel in Manila. He won via an eight-rounder unanimous decision. 

Meanwhile, Tanaka, also 28, recently reclaimed the WBO world super flyweight strap after losing it in 2020 against Kazuto Ioka. 

He won over Mexican Christian Bacasegua Rangel last February 24 by unanimous decision to win back the WBO world super flyweight strap. 

Behind Cataraja in the rankings were Cristofer Rosales of Nicaragua, Phumelele Cafu of South Africa, Tetsuro Ohashi of Japan, and Sikho Nqthole of South Africa. 

Fellow Filipino Jayr Raquinel is ranked ninth in the latest rankings. 

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TAGS: Kevin Jake “KJ” Cataraja, World Boxing Organization (WBO)

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