Santisima wants to make a name for himself in Japan

AFTER failing in his campaign in the US, former world title challenger Jeo Santisima will try his luck in the Japanese scene.

Santisima will try to break into the rich Japanese market as he once again sees action in “The Land of the Rising Sun.”

The 26-year-old Santisima is set to return to Japan on Dec. 11, 2022, and takes on Japanese prospect Toshiki Shimomachi in a 10-rounder at the Edion Arena in Osaka.

“I’ll do my best to win and try to make a name for myself in Japan,” Santisima told SunStar Cebu.

Santisima, a former ALA Boy, made his Japan debut last Aug. 14 and demolished veteran Hiroshige Osawa in five rounds. He’s one of just three Pinoy fighters that have won in Japan this year.

Santisima attempted to break into the US scene in 2020 and challenged then World Boxing Organization (WBO) super bantamweight king Emanuel Navarrete in Las Vegas. He put on a gallant stand but was stopped in the 11th round.

Santisima made his US return early this year in an attempt at another world title run. He once again failed and was stopped in the ninth round.

Santisima plans to build up his career in Japan before attempting another shot at a world title. He has no target just yet, but he’s looking to make a run at the WBO featherweight belt, wherein his former foe Navarette is the current titleholder. He’s currently ranked No. 13 by WBO in the featherweight division.

“I want to fight anybody as long as I’ll be given another chance to fight for a world championship,” he said.

Santisima, however, must get past Shimomachi, who isn’t a pushover.

Shimomachi is a former Japanese youth champion. He has only lost once in his career, by split decision, against Yusuke Hiranuma in 2016.

Shimomachi hasn’t tasted defeat since 2016 and has won 13 of his last 15 contests. He’s coming off a seventh round technical knockout of Takuya Mizuno.

Santisima is 22-4 with 19 knockouts, while Shimomachi is 15-1-2 with 11 knockouts.