Fighting Harada is a legend in his native Japan and deservingly so. He beat Pone Kingpetch to win the flyweight title. He lost it back to the talented Kingpetch and then moved up to bantamweight. Not once but twice he outscored Brazil’s great Eder Jofre for the title. Those were the only fights Jofre ever lost. The legacy of Harada had been forged.
Harada would defend his title against Australia’s Lionel Rose. Very few thought the title would change hands when they met. Rose was a talented contender but Harada had defeated a legend in Jofre. I guess Rose forgot to read the script. The night Rose met Harada he put on a boxing clinic. Lionel met Harada’s strength, power and aggression with pure and simple boxing tactics. He jabbed effectively. He counter punched with precision. He moved side to side. He smartly spun out of corners and away from the ropes. Lionel fought a perfect tactical fight. In essence, it was a masterpiece.
Rose would struggle to retain his title against the very tough Jesus Castillo. He would lose it to the legendary Ruben Olivares. Harada would move up to featherweight and twice fail to defeat Australia’s Johnny Famechon for the crown.
Harada is in the Hall Of Fame and rightfully so. He was a great fighter who had an outstanding career. Lionel Rose is not in the Hall Of Fame and to be honest, I would not vote for him. BUT…The night he beat Harada was a performance of Hall Of Fame status and you can never take that away from him.