|← Previous||Next →|
- Characters Introduced: None
- Locations Introduced: None
- Techniques Introduced: None
- Mentioned Boxers: None
- Title Page Character(s): Makunouchi Ippo, Takamura Mamoru, Aoki Masaru, Kimura Tatsuya
In the ninth round Date is looking for an opportunity to throw his heart break shot, but Martinez keeps landing hit after hit. Date's friends begin to worry, as they know that even though he has a plan, it will be useless if he falls before he can execute it, so he must do so as soon as possible. Date then throws a jab that apparently has no power behind it, but in actuality is intended to judge the distance. When the challenger twists his wrist, Martinez notices how he is going for a corkscrew blow, and covers his head. Date launches his heart break shot, but to the terrible shock of everyone, Martinez uses his elbow to block it and shatters Date's hand. Date notices how he can not feel his jaw, and realizes that along with his wrists, and his jaw, his ribs are also shattered. He backs up into the corner and thinks that no mater how many times he fights he will never be able to defeat Martinez.
The round ends and Nakadai tries to convince Date to end the fight. Date no longer remembers why it is that he is fighting, and he knows he has had all his tools and weapons taken away from him. As he considers quitting, Aiko walks over and hands him his mouthpiece covered in blood before telling him that they will watch to the end.