LiverKick

Switch to desktop Register Login

LiverKick - LiverKick

Japanese Kickboxing Scene: February Recap

February was kind of a slow month at the top of the ladder, especially when compared to January and March, but it still had a plethora of events and was not devoid of high level competition. Big cards in February included Shootboxing, NJKF and Fist Kick's first events of 2013, all of which featured top Japanese fighters taking on foreign competition, with two facing Rajadamnern Stadium champions.

February 3rd - J-Network: J-Fight in Shinjuku ~vol.29~/J-Girls 2013 ~Victorious Goddess 1st~

In the J-Network main event, Bantamweight champ Kentaro Kimura stopped MA Kick's Hiroshi Watanabe via cut in the 2nd round, bouncing back from a loss to Takuma Ito that snapped a 5-fight winning streak. In a fight that may have determined Kimura's next challenger, 7th ranked Yojiro upset #1 Kenta by split decision. For Yojiro it's his 3rd straight and Kenta is now winless in his last 4. As part of a 4-man mini-tournament to determine WPMF Japan Super Flyweight champion Kiminori Matsuzaki's next challenger (or for the vacant title if he vacated it), Ryuji Wakayama upset Hiroyuki Yamano by unanimous decision. This was quite the upset as Yamano was coming off of a win over Yuji Uwasawa. In the J-Girls main event, Yuichiro Nagashima student Chihiro Kira took a unanimous decision over Shootboxing JKS48 tournament runner-up Akari Eneos, avenging her sister, Yuki Kira, who lost to Akari last year. 

February 10th - DEEP*KICK 14

In the night's main event, 65kg champ and Krush regular Hiroto Yamaguchi took a close unanimous decision over 2011 K-1 Koshien runner-up Yuya Shibata. Yamaguchi has now won 2 straight since losing to Koya Urabe in the semifinals of the 2012 Krush Youth GP. Shibata also participated in that tournament, but lost his quarterfinal fight to Daizo Sasaki. The event was also supposed to have a 70kg title fight between champion Ren Takeno and Yoji Fujimoto, but Takeno weighed in 6.2kg over the limit and his title was forfeited to Fujimoto. In a pair of 55kg fights, Yokinobu Nakatsuka stopped Koki Nakamu in the 3rd round while Krush veteran Kazuki Tanaka defeated Ikki by decision. This likely sets up a fight between Tanaka and Nakatsuka and if Tanaka wins he could get a shot at 55kg champ Seiya Rokukawa. Nakatsuka has faced Rokukawa twice and lost convincingly both times.

MA Kick - Break 34

The main event saw #5 Welterweight Akira Makoto keep his undefeated record with a win over #1 Yasuyki Murata. Makoto will likely face off with champion Jun Nakazawa next and will need to bring it if he wants to stay undefeated. In the co-main event, Thai Pupanrek Esugym stopped Yukimaru in the 1st round.

February 17th - NJKF 2013 1st

In the month's biggest event, Rajadamnern Stadium champ Kaimookdham Aikbangzai dominated title challenger Kunitaka en route to a 2nd round stoppage, retaining his Raja Stadium title. The fight was a bit of a mismatch, as Kunitaka had a weak record against Thai competition. The main event saw Gansuwan Sasiprapa score a bit of an upset over Tetsuya Yamato. Gansuwan has had strong outings in his last two fights in Japan, taking out Tetsuya Yamato and Yuya Yamato. This loss stopped a 3-fight win streak for Yamato. In a NJKF Welterweight title fight, Yuya Yamato picked up a second close win over Soichiro Miyakoshi on scores of 49-48(x3) to earn his first title defense. Miyakoshi had looked very good since their first fight, but was unable to use his momentum to overcome Yamato despite a strong performance. His brother Keijiro Miyakoshi also fought, defending his NJKF Lightweight title against Ryota, snapping a 2-fight losing streak. NJKF Super Lightweight champion Seiji Takahashi defended his title as well with a one sided decision over Kazushige Sugama. NJKF Super Bantamweight champion Arato was unable to keep his title, losing a decision to challenger Hiroya Haga. WBC Japan Women's Featherweight champ Ayano Oishi defended her title with a 5th round TKO via cut in the 5th round over Team Dragon's Kimiko Sasaki. Finally, Flyweight prospects Nemo and Takashi Saenchaigym fought for a 2nd time, their first encounter ending in a draw, with Takashi picking up the unanimous decision win and vacant NJKF Flyweight title, ending Nemo's impressive run.

Fist Kick IX

The main event saw Rajadamnern Stadium Featherweight champion Sirimongkol Eiwaigym make his third trip to Japan, this time defeating Daiki Nagashima by unanimous decision, although the fight was pretty close. Sirimongkol improves to 2-0-1 on Japanese soil, having previously defeated Shunta Ito and surprisingly drawing with Yusuke Shimizu. The co-main event saw Kanongsuk WSR pick up a win over WPMF Japan Super Lightweight champion Hidekazu Tanaka. Kanongsuk had just been knocked out by undefeated prospect Yasuyuki while Tanaka was coming off of a loss to Minoru Kimura. Polish fighter Joanna Jedrzejczyk returned to Japan after a win over Ayano Oishi in the Hoost Cup and picked up another win over NJKF Featherweight champ AZUMA. In a bit of an upset, Takeshi Shimizu defeated TOMOYUKI to win the vacant WPMF Japan Super Welterweight title. TOMOYUKI had recently had a 3-fight win streak snapped by Buakaw in Thai Fight while Shimizu was knocked out by Takayuki WSR in his last outing. In another upset, Noro Yuki stopped J-Network Super-Flyweight champ Yuki via cuts in the 2nd round to win the vacant WPMF Japan Bantamweight title. Noro Yuki now has two big wins over guys moving up in weight recently, previously picking up a win over TO-MA. Yuki had won three straight including a win at Bantamweight over Kenta. In the other semifinal of the aforementioned WPMF Japan Super Flyweight tournament, Nagata Haryi upset Sazanami Satsutama in an extension round and will now face Ryuji Wakayama. This is a much more shocking upset than Wakayama's win over Yamano as Satsutama had looked very strong over the past few years, only losing to the top 3 fighters in the division. Also in action was Madoka Jinnai, also known as Erika Kamimura's amateur rival and the first girl to beat her, albeit in amateur competition, defeated J-Girls Bantamweight champion Yukino Oishi, winning the vacant WPMF Japan Bantamweight title.

February 22nd - Shootboxing 2013 act.1

The main event saw the struggling Yoshihiro Sato take on "Japanese Killer" and 2012 S-Cup runner-up Henri van Opstal. Sato became the first Japanese fighter to defeat van Opstal, winning a close majority decision. Sato was coming off of a disappointing loss to Kenta which dethroned him as Japan's top Middleweight, a distinction he had held since Masato's retirement. The co-main event saw Warren Stevelmans pick up a win over the entertaining Bovy Sor Udomson. Stevelmans was supposed to compete in last year's S-Cup, but opted to fight as a late replacement in GLORY. Bovy did compete in the S-Cup, but lost in the opening round to Henri van Opstal. Shootboxing Featherweight champion Akira Utagawa took a one-sided decision over Kazuki Tamagawa, scoring shoot point after shoot point. MMA fighter Joachim Hansen returned to Shootboxing after a surprisingly close fight with Hiroaki Suzuki in last year's S-Cup in his Shootboxing debut, this time picking up a win over Kenji Kanai on extremely impressive scores of 30-21(x2) and 30-20. Hinata competed on the card, picking up an easy win over Masatoshi Hyakutake. K-1 veteran Kizaemon Saiga returned to Shootboxing as well, picking up his second win in the promotion with a win over Makoto Yamauchi. Ai Takahashi returned with a win, defeating Korean Mi-jeon Jang. Finally, Rena's protégé and JKS48 winner MIO suffered her first pro loss at the hands of J-GIRLS MiniFlyweight champion Momi. 

February 24th - Big Bang 12

The main event saw Krush 70kg champ Yasuhiro Kido take on Asami Zaurus, who lost a close fight to Takuro Moriya which would have given him a shot at Kido's Krush title. Asami put up a good fight, but came up short as Kido picked up yet another win. Shunta Ito bounced back from a close loss to Hiroki Akimoto with a 4th round KO of Korean fighter Seong-bum Woo. At Heavyweight, Hiromi Amada had his first real competition in a while and picked up a win over Tsutomu Takahagi. Toshiki Taniyama picked up his 2nd straight win with a close majority decision over Korean fighter Son-cheol Oh. At 71kg, Yoichi Yamazaki stopped K-1 veteran Shingo Garyu while 55kg Krush prospect Namito Izawa dropped a decision to Ariaki Okada. 

Hoost Cup Spirit 2

The main event saw prospect Sho Ogawa struggle with RISE Lightweight Shohei Asahara, but ultimately pull out a split decision victory. After a strong run that saw him win the 2011 K-1 Koshien tournament and also pick up wins over Makihira Keita and Minoru Kimura, Ogawa is 1-1 in his last two and hasn't looked great in either fight. Asahara may not be the best Lightweight, but he is much better than his 0-5 record over his last 5 fights would indicate. He took RISE 65kg champ Koji Yoshimoto and top ranked RISE Lightweight Yuto Watanabe to extension rounds, lost close, competitive decisions to Yusuke Sugawara and current RISE Lightweight champ Sung-hyun Lee and now loses a split decision to Ogawa. 

NJKF Muay Thai Open 23

The main event pitted Kongenchai Esugym against Shota Saenchaigym and started well for Shota, who scored knockdowns in the 1st and 2nd rounds. However, Kongenchai stormed back and was eventually able to cut Shota with an elbow, causing the doctor to stop the fight in the 4th. Though he likely would have lost a decision, Kongenchai showed a lot of heart and was able to get the stoppage, even if it was kind of anti-climactic. This is a tough loss for Shota who was winning and had won 2 straight, including a win over Shohei Hareyama. The co-main event saw Dejpanom Saenchaigym bounce back from a loss to Seiji Takahashi with a win over Team Dragon's Shota Watanabe. 

Read more...

Thai's Dominate at Thai Fight 2013- King of Muay Thai

In what's becoming a growing trend for Thai Fight events, the Thai's once again easily routed their less than stellar farang competition in a 7 fight shutout on the main card. Featured on the first Thai Fight of 2013 were fan favorites like Sudsakorn, Saiyok, Iquezang, and Saenchainoi.

One of the top 70 kg fighters,Saiyok Pumphanmung, took on a game Thiago Texeira in one of the few fights that went the distance. While Texeira was resilient enough to last until the final bell, he couldn't mount any sort of offence throughout 3 rounds that would threaten the veteran Thai. Saiyok won a unanimous decision win; his second in a row after dropping a loss via injury to Dylan Salvador late last year.

In another big name fight, the well known Sudsakorn Sor. Klinmee took on the not-so-well-known Veselin Veselinov from Russia. Veselinov looked good in the opening round, pushing forward and landing a few big lefts. Sudsakorn seemed to take the shots as minor annoyances more than anything and ramped up the pace in the second, dropping Veselinov in the middle of the round. He kept the pressure high and eventually the Russian wilted, going down to a hard shot midway through the third.

In the final fight on the card, Saenchainoi Pumphanmung fought Jose Neto in a bout that revealed the Thai's golden years may be behind him. Neto never hurt Saenchainoi, but he stayed in the match far more than he should have. It was an overall sloppy affair, with Saenchainoi already looking pudgy and slow from his jump to 68 kg. Regardless, he still won a unanimnous decision over the Brazilian on all the judges scorecards.

Overall, the quality of the competition was a bit dissapointing. None of the foreign fighters stood much of a chance against their Thai counterparts, which is strange considering there is so much international skill at 70 kg and 68 kg. Hopefully this downward spiral in talent will not be a mainstay of the event.

FULL RESULTS BELOW 

Saenchainoi def. Jose Neto by Decision

Payakdam def. Ashley Bryne by TKO in Rd. 1

Sudsakorn def. Veselin Veselinov by KO in Rd. 3

Yodpayak def. Paulo Sergio dos Santos by KO in Rd. 1

Iquezang def. Behzad Rafigh Doust by Decision

Saiyok def. Thiago Texeira by Decision

Peemai JitMuangnon def. Jackson Alves de Souza by Decision

 

Read more...

Thai's Dominate at Thai Fight 2013- King of Muay Thai

In what's becoming a growing trend for Thai Fight events, the Thai's once again easily routed their less than stellar farang competition in a 7 fight shutout on the main card. Featured on the first Thai Fight of 2013 were fan favorites like Sudsakorn, Saiyok, Iquezang, and Saenchainoi.

One of the top 70 kg fighters, Saiyok Pumphanmung, took on a game Thiago Texeira in one of the few fights that went the distance. While Texeira was resilient enough to last until the final bell, he couldn't mount any sort of offence throughout 3 rounds that would threaten the veteran Thai. Saiyok won a unanimous decision win; his second in a row after dropping a loss via injury to Dylan Salvador late last year. 

In another big name fight, the well known Sudsakorn Sor. Klinmee took on the not-so-well-known Veselin Veselinov from Russia. Veselinov looked good in the opening round, pushing forward and landing a few big lefts. Sudsakorn seemed to take the shots as minor annoyances more than anything and ramped up the pace in the second, dropping Veselinov in the middle of the round. He kept the pressure high and eventually the Russian wilted, going down to a hard shot midway through the third. 

In the final fight on the card, Saenchainoi Pumphanmung fought Jose Neto in a bout that revealed the Thai's golden years may be behind him. Neto never hurt Saenchainoi, but he stayed in the match far more than he should have. It was an overall sloppy affair, with Saenchainoi already looking pudgy and slow from his jump to 68 kg. Regardless, he still won a unanimnous decision over the Brazilian on all the judges scorecards.

Overall, the quality of the competition was a bit dissapointing. None of the foreign fighters stood much of a chance against their Thai counterparts, which is strange considering there is so much international skill at 70 kg and 68 kg. Hopefully this downward spiral in talent will not be a mainstay of the event.

FULL RESULTS BELOW 

Saenchainoi def. Jose Neto by Decision

Payakdam def. Ashley Bryne by TKO in Rd. 1

Sudsakorn def. Veselin Veselinov by KO in Rd. 3

Yodpayak def. Paulo Sergio dos Santos by KO in Rd. 1

Iquezang def. Behzad Rafigh Doust by Decision

Saiyok def. Thiago Texeira by Decision

Peemai JitMuangnon def. Jackson Alves de Souza by Decision

 

Read more...

MA Kick ~Break 33~ Results

MA Kick started off 2013 with a big card headlined by a Heavyweight fight between Magnum Sakai and Alex Roberts as well as 5 title fights featuring MA Kick's biggest stars. The theme of the night was rematches as four of the five title fights were rematches, but only one fighter was able to pick up a 2nd win against his opponent, as two of the others lost their titles and the third nearly lost his title in a draw.

While Roberts vs Sakai was the main event, it was not the most important fight of the night, so I will recap the event by order of importance. At Flyweight, top 5 Flyweights Ryuji Kato and Yuji Uwasawa met for a second time and after another close fight, it was Ryuji Kato who came out on top, winning a split decision and earning the MA Kick Flyweight title. The win solidifies Kato as the #1 Flyweight in Japan as he had a win over almost every top fighter in his division except for Uwasawa, who he lost his MA Kick title in their first meeting last January. Kato has now won 4 in a row and is the owner of the MA Kick, WPMF Japan and WBC Japan Flyweight titles, so it's hard to know which one he will defend next, though I can imagine MA Kick want to book a 3rd fight between the two. Uwasawa was just 1-2 since beating Kato last year, getting stopped by Shuichi Wentz and Hiroyuki Yamano before picking up a win over Nagata Haryi. He is still a top 5 fighter, but he will need a solid win over a top 10 guy to remain elite.

In a Bantamweight title fight, Takashi Ohno improved to 2-0 against Takuma Ito with a majority decision win to retain his MA Kick belt. The two first fought last January with Ohno taking Ito's title and emerging as the top Bantamweight in Japan. Despite fighting in 2 different weight classes throughout his career, the 22 year old Ohno has put together a 12-4-1 record and hasn't lost a fight at Bantamweight since a split decision loss in January of 2010 to current MA Kick Super Bantamweight champ Keisuke Miyamoto. After the fight he stated he wanted to avenge his loss to Dyki and a rematch is definitely something I want to see as there's not a whole lot for him to do at Bantamweight at the moment as he owns two wins over the #2 in his division and has a win over Seiya Rokukawa, who fights Dyki for the vacant RISE 55kg title in March. Ohno vs the winner of that fight would be a great matchup. After losing in their first fight, Ito went on to lose to Kiminori Matsuzaki, which put him on a 3-fight losing streak. He bounced back with 3 straight wins, including a big win over J-Network champ Kentaro Kimura, but the loss here moves him back to square one. He did better in this fight than their first, as he was knocked down twice in their first encounter and he is still young, so it's not as if he's at a difficult time in his career. I'd like to see him rematch Matsuzaki or take on someone like J-Network Flyweight champ Yuki next.

In a Super Bantamweight title fight, champion Keisuke Miyamoto and challenger Kunihiro fought to a majority draw, giving Miyamoto his first defense. While Miyamoto escapes with the title, he takes a huge hit to his stock as Kunihiro won the only judge's card that wasn't a draw and Miyamoto was a big favorite in this fight after knocking off former #2 Super Bantamweight Ryuya Kusakabe in October. Like the two previous title fights, this was a rematch of a fight that  took place in 2011 that Miyamoto won quite handily. This draw is huge for Kunihiro, who didn't have a real quality win on his record. He goes from afterthought to legitimate contender and may have earned himself another shot at Miyamoto. While I think Miyamoto may have overlooked him a bit and I would favor him in a third fight, I think Kunihiro may have figured out a gameplan to beat Miyamoto.

In a Super Featherweight title fight, Tadahiro Hashio pulled off the upset, forcing a doctor's stoppage of Hikaru Machida in the 4th round to win the MA Kick Super Featherweight title. After failing to win the MA Kick Lightweight title from Yoshito Kajita, Hashio dropped to Super Featherweight where he is now 2-0 and the MA Kick champion. While this may look like a bit of a fluke win, Hashio was step for step with Machida after a rough first round and was able to open up a cut that stopped the fight, so props to him. Machida now finds himself on a 3-fight losing streak after a loss to Yoshinori Nakasuka and a similar cut stoppage loss to RIOT at K-SPIRIT 4. After looking to be one of Japan's most promising prospects over the last 2 years, Machida finds himself without any titles and with a bit of an exploitable flaw for the ruleset he fights under. While I don't think these cut stoppages will drive him away from full contact rules, it would be interesting to see what he could do against RISE and Krush's crop of 60kg fighters.

In the night's final title fight, Super Welterweight champion Kazuya Takeda was upset by Hiroto, who earned a doctor's stoppage via cuts in the 3rd round. Keeping with the night's theme, this was another rematch and Takeda had won their first fight in March of 2011, netting him the MA Kick title. Hiroto had failed twice before in winning the title, as he lost the first fight to Takeda and then lost to Masahito Arthur in a #1 contender bout. However a 4-1 record since the loss to Arthur earned him this shot which he capitalized on. Like the other fights, I expect a third fight between these two due to the nature of the stoppage, but it's a solid win for the previously unheralded Hiroto. Takeda reached a career high in 2012, going 4-0 including a big win over TOMOYUKI, but takes a step back to start 2013. That being said, I believe he is one of Japan's best 70kg fighters, if not the best, who has not fought on a bigger stage. 

Quick results after the break

Read more...

Copyright 2010 - 2014 LiverKick.com. All Rights Reserved.

Top Desktop version