Panya Pradabsri will enter the lion’s den for his next title defense.

The reigning WBC strawweight titleholder is set to face ambitious challenger Yudai Shigeoka, who aims to win his first major belt in just his seventh pro fight. The bout headlines the 3150Fight Vol. 5 event, which takes place April 16 at Yoyogi National 2nd Gymnasium in Tokyo.

Also on the card, Ginjiro Shigeoka—Yudai’s younger brother—will face former IBF strawweight title claimant Rene Mark Cuarto. The exact stakes of the bout are not yet established, as the IBF is currently reviewing a request for the two to challenge for an interim title since current full beltholder Daniel Valladares has filed for a medical exception.

Both bouts were formally announced at a press conference Tuesday afternoon (local time) held by Kameda Promotions—headed by former three-division titleholder Koki Kameda. The Shigeoka brothers were also on site, though the obligatory staredown sessions were limited to their holding framed portraits of their respective opponents.

Pradabsri (39-1, 22KOs) will attempt the fourth defense of the WBC strawweight title he first claimed in a November 2020 points win over long-reigning titlist Wanheng ‘TBE’ Menayothin. The 32-year-old from Bangkok outpointed his countryman in a rematch last March 29 along with a twelve-round, unanimous decision victory over Japan’s Norihito Tanaka last August 31 in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand.

This time, Pradabsri—better known to your friends and mine as Petchmanee CP Freshmart—will travel to Japan for his latest ring adventure. It will mark his first road trip since October 2017, when he suffered his lone defeat in a twelve-round, majority decision to former WBC titlist Chaozhong Xiong in Datong, China.

Yudai Shigeoka (6-0, 4KOs) gets a true home game for his first career title fight. The 25-year-old southpaw from Tokyo has yet to fight outside his home country in his young career. His latest win came in a third-round knockout of Tatsuro Nakashima last November 17 at the famed Korakuen Hall.

The title opportunity for Yudai comes just three months after younger brother Ginjiro Shigeoka (8-0, 6KOs; 1NC) was considered unlucky to not walk away with the IBF belt in his last fight.

The hard-hitting 23-year-old southpaw was having his way with Valladares in their January 6 title fight in Osaka. Their brief affair ended in anti-climactic fashion, when a clash of heads left Valladares (26-3-1, 15KOs; 1NC) dizzy and unable to continue. The fight was stopped at 2:48 of round three, with Shigeoka reduced to tears after being denied the title.

Valladares was still on the hook for a mandatory title fight rematch with Philippines’s Cuarto (21-3-2, 12KOs), from whom he won the IBF title last July 1 via split decision in San Nicolas de los Garza. The IBF ruled at the time of the Valladares-Shigeoka fight that Cuarto was due a shot at the title within 90 days of the contest.

Injuries sustained in the fight by Valladares left him unable to honor that obligation. However, his team only recently filed a medical exception, which the IBF is currently reviewing and is expected to rule upon within the next couple of days. The expectation is for the sanctioning body to sanction Ginjiro-Cuarto as an interim title fight, with Valladares mandated to next face the winner.

Cuarto held the IBF title for just more than 16 months, having won the belt from and successfully defended in his two-fight series with countryman Pedro Taduran. His lone fight since losing the title to Valladares came last December 23, when Cuarto scored a second-round knockout of Dexter Alimento.

The show will air live on Abema TV in Japan. Kameda Promotions previously confirmed to of plans to eventually secure a long-term deal to have its 3150Fight series air in the U.S. However, it is unlikely to occur in time for stateside viewers to enjoy this card without the benefit of a VPN.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox