April 12, 2013 / 8:58 AM / 6 years ago

Olympic gold medallist Murata to turn professional

Japan's Ryota Murata shows his gold medal during the presentation ceremony after the Men's Middle (75kg) gold medal boxing match at the London Olympics August 11, 2012. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

(Reuters) - Ryota Murata, who ended Japan’s long wait for Olympic boxing gold by taking the men’s middleweight title in London last year, had decided to turn professional.

The 27-year-old has joined the Misako Gym stable in Tokyo, Japanese media reported on Friday. No details of his debut bout were disclosed.

Murata beat Brazilian Esquiva Falcao Florentino 14-13 with some shrewd inside fighting at the London Games to win Japan’s first boxing gold since 1964.

Reporting by Patrick Johnston in Singapore; Editing by John O'Brien

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