|Heavyweight (Per 1/20)|
|6.||Mirko Cro Cop
|Light HW (per 1/20)|
|Middleweight (per 1/20)|
|Welterweight (per 1/20)|
|4.||Marc de Bonte|
|70kg (Per 1/20)|
|2.||Robin van Roosmalen|
|65kg (per 1/20)|
Akihiro Gono held a public practice today as he trains at the Saenchai Muay-Thai Gym in preparation for his upcoming March 19th Krush match against K-1's Yuya Yamamoto.
Don't think that the longtime staple of Japanese MMA is totally out of his element when it comes to kickboxing, he is a former All-Japan Kickboxing Heavyweight champion.
Last year in MMA, Gono defeated Sweden's Diego Gonzalez at Sengoku 12 and and then dropped down to Lightweight for Sengoku 14 only to lose to former K-1 veteran and SRC training player Jadamba Narantungalag.
It'll be fun to see Gono return to kickboxing, the question is can he hang in with the much more experienced Yamamoto? Either way this is great exposure for the Krush promotion as they continue to roll out quality events.
Here's the video of Akihiro Gono's AJKF Heavyweight title fight against Kazushi Nishida.Add a comment
The next fight on the 2011 John Wayne Parr farewell circuit has been announced - on July 30 Parr will face Vuyisile Colossa. The fight will be the main event at Capital Punishment 4 in Canberra.
Colossa is perhaps a bit of a surprise as most were expecting Parr's final fights to be against old rivals, such as his May 28 fight with Mike Zambidis. But Colossa will make for an excellent opponent. Those who have been following us since our HKL days know we have been covering Vusi since last year's shocking upset win over Yodsaenklai Fairtex - ending Yod's two year undefeated streak. Since then, Colossa has won a Wu Ling Feng world championship in China, competed at the prestigious Muay Thai King's Cup (where he lost to Yodsaenklai), and started his MMA career with a record of 3-1. He's a busy fighter who takes challenges in all sorts of different styles, but he will need to be focused here to defeat Parr. The Gunslinger may be facing retirement, but he's still a relevant factor in the Middleweight scene, and will be a tough challenge for the younger Colossa. Should make for a great fight.
Also announced for the card: 2010 K-1 Oceania champion Ben Edwards will compete in the semi-main event. His opponent is not yet announced. Check out more details at TheScienceof8Limbs.Add a comment
In April, Strikeforce Lightweight Champion Gilbert Melendez squares off with Japanese powerhouse Tatsuya Kawajiri. This is a big fight for Kawajiri and for fans of Japanese MMA, as Gilbert Melendez absolutely crushed Shinya Aoki last year in Strikeforce, sending every website's Lightweight Rankings into disarray.
For Kawajiri, it is a big fight as he will get introduced to a wider American audience, and is coming off of a big win over former Strikeforce Lightweight Champion Josh Thomson. Kawajiri brings an entirely different skillset to the table than Aoki, including a very strong wrestling and judo game with good takedowns and the ability to hold down and pound out opponents. On top of that, he also possesses formidable stand up skills. While Shinya Aoki was taken down at will and kept at bay by Melendez's hands, with Kawajiri it will be a whole different ballgame.
It turns out that Crusher isn't just doing his normal training for this fight, he is training with K-1 MAX and KRUSH competitor, Yuya Yamamoto. Yamamoto is best known to recent fans as the guy that Petrosyan absolutely annihilated in 2009. Outside of that, Yamamoto is a strong fighter and does have some good ability on top of heavy hands. [source]Add a comment
Remember the awesome online documentary based on the life and times of Alistair Overeem? Well, apparently it did so well that there will be a second round of online documentaries based on Overeem coming soon. With Alistair's next fight looking to be in June for Strikeforce, expect training videos leading into the fight and more coming up shortly. Until then? There is a teaser (there is always a teaser). [source]
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Brothers Koya Urabe and Hirotaka Urabe along with fellow Team Dragon member Ryuji Kajiwara held a public workout today in Japan as they prepare for next weekends Krush Triple Final Round 2011. The event will feature the conclusion of the 63kg, 60kg and 55kg tournaments.
20-year old Koya Urabe defeated South Korean Sung Hyun Lee in the 63kg quarterfinals January 9th and will now face 2009 Krush Rookies Cup winner Takuya Shirahama in the semi's. The youngest of the Urabe brothers, Koya has an impressive 6-1 K-1 record and was the 2008 K-1 KOSHIEN runner-up.
In the other 63kg semi-final, teammate Ryuji Kajiwara will face Kizaemon Saiga. If both Koya Urabe and Kajiwara win their respected matches we'll have an all Team Dragon 63kg final.
The eldest Urabe brother, 21-year old Hirotaka Urabe, will meet Dynamite Yuta in the semi-final at 60kg. Hirotaka was the 2007 All Nippon Shinkarate Light & Middle Weight Tournament Champion and holds a 2-2 record in K-1.
The March 19th Korakuen Hall event along with the tournament fights will also be highlighted by the 70kg Superfight between between K-1 MAX fighter Yuya Yamamoto and MMA veteran Akihiro Gono.Add a comment
Usually by this time in the year, we'd have a K-1 show to kick off the Heavyweight season, or at least be preparing for one. This year is different, as instead It's Showtime stepped up to the plate and has taken that top position by promoting a big card over the weekend that proved to be the first big kickboxing card of the year on an international level, and it was great. The show's headliner was two young European heavyweights squaring off against each other.
The fight wasn't about titles or a tournament, instead it was two young heavyweights jocking for position and showing the world what they are capable of. Neither men have the hype behind them that a fighter like Badr Hari does, nor did they have the opportunities that he was given. They had to fight for their positions.
Daniel Ghita is the elder of the two, clocking in at 29. Ghita meddled in his home of Romania for a full ten years, until 2009 when It's Showtime gave him a shot on their biggest show of the year, the Amsterdam ArenA show against the Czech Republic's Thomas Hron. Ghita came in with a fire lit from under him and stopped the fight in the second round with his deadly leg kicks that he is known for. Then in August he entered K-1's Final Qualifying tournament in Tokyo and blew through it with all first round knockouts.
Hesdy Gerges (pronounced 'Hell-heth' if you didn't know, how bad ass is that?) is 27 and worked his way up the ultra-competitive circuit in Amsterdam, as well as through personal issues. Thom Harinck has discussed Gerges troubled past and how if people thought Badr Hari was a bad boy, if they knew about Gerges it would blow them away. Gerges was invited to K-1 in 2009 to take on the giant, Semmy Schilt in what should have been a feature bout for Schilt in the March opening of the K-1 season show. Gerges fought hard and was able to hold on for all three rounds before the bout was decided for Schilt. Gerges fought his way back up and caught the eye of It's Showtime, who the next year felt like they had gold putting him up against Badr Hari. It has all been upward from there, as he proved just how tough he is and made an impact on K-1 as well in 2010.
Neither man had an easy path to this weekend's show. Gerges was given Semmy Schilt again in the Final 16 last year, knocking him out of contention, while Ghita was able to make the Final 8 before falling to Gokhan Saki. I feel like there has been a swell of support for Ghita over the last year, and rightfully so. Ghita's powerful kicks and hard head can take him far, he has shown a weakness with his hands but is clearly working on improving them. Gerges is a fighter that I feel a lot of people underrate. While Badr Hari was beating him last year, the heart and toughness he had shown, as well as the clean shots he was landing amid Badr's angry flurries were impressive. For a while now I've felt that Gerges has some serious potential and a strong future as a Heavyweight. His kicks are not as crushing as Ghita's, but his hands are much, much better at this point. So going into this fight, it was clear that both men are a big deal.
Over the past few years that has been a rather obnoxious talking point on the internet that Heavyweight kickboxing is "dead" and there is no new talent. That dominance of Peter Aerts and Semmy Schilt is "clear" proof of this, somehow. It isn't that they are just that good, but their age should somehow bring down the rest of the field. The rise of Badr Hari, Ruslan Karaev, Gokhan Saki, Tyrone Spong, Kyotaro and now Ghita and Gerges tells an entirely different story. It shows an upcoming changing of the guard, a new generation coming from a few transition years in the mid-00's. A fight between Hesdy Gerges and Daniel Ghita was more than a Heavyweight clash, it was a clash between two of the fighters that we've felt will carry on the elite Heavyweight tradition in the coming years and be part of a new golden age. The fact that the fight we saw was such an even, exciting fight is simply proof of all of these things, that regardless of who walked away the victor, both these men are going to make the next ten years or so extremely exciting to watch unfold.Add a comment
Last week we asked who would win the It's Showtime main event between Daniel Ghita and Hesdy Gerges. Your response...
66% - Ghita
34% - Gerges
Sorry LiverKick.com readers - you know we love you, but 66% of you were stumped this time. Of course, the fight was not without a bit of controversy as Ghita was considered knocked down after a low blow. So...
This Week's Question: How did you score the fight?
Vote now!Add a comment
It's a busy weekend ahead for combat sport in Japan! While we wait for more information on the promotional plans of former PRIDE FC brass Nobuyuki Sakakibara and Hiroyuki Kato and the future direction of FEG/K-1/DREAM, we’re lucky enough to be tied over with lots of great action from the smaller promotions.
Kicking things off Friday, Jewels Lightweight Champion Ayaka Hamasaki (4-0) will headline the JEWELS 12th Ring show against American Top Team's Jessica Aguilar (10-4) in a non-title match. Lisa Ward was originally scheduled to face Hamasaki however she was inujred training and is unable to compete. Jessica Aguilar steps in after her fight scheduled for this weekend in Michigan was cancelled.
Injuries also affected the main event for Shooto's SHOOTOR'S LEGACY 2 which takes place on Saturday at Korakuen Hall. World Shooto Flyweight Champion Rambaa "M16" Somdet was injured late last month and forced to drop out of his title fight against Junji Sarumaru. The match is now scheduled to take place on April 29th. Yuki Shojo (10-5-2) vs. Noboru "Shinpei" Tahara (9-5-1) has been moved up to the main event slot. Yuki Shojo is an exciting fighter who ranks as one of the top Flyweights in the world and Shinpei Tahara is a former 114-pound title challenger. Also on the card King of Pancrase Flyweight Champion Kiyotaka Shimizu (7-3-2) will make his Shooto debut as he's set to take on Shinichi Hanawa (8-7-1) who’s won his last four fights.
Speaking of Pancrase, The Impressive Tour 2011 makes a stop in Osaka on Sunday. In the main event, 2010 Bantamweight Neo-Blood tournament winner and former Karate champion Motonobu Tezuka (15-3-3) meets Judo specialist Hiroshi Tomita (8-2-2) of Pancrase Inagakigumi. The semi-main event is a Womens ‘Athena’ match billed as JEWELS vs VALKYRIE, Osaka native Hitomi Akano (16-8) will fight for the first time in her home town when she takes on the much outclassed Chisa Yonezawa (1-3).
DEEP is holding a Rock/MMA fushion event on Sunday called ANNIHILATE! It's a smaller card featuring a one night four-man Megaton GP tournament along with a bunch of hard rock/metal bands. In Block A of the GP, Baru “Seiryu” Harn (1-1) is set to meet Seigo Mizuguchi (7-8) and in Block B Ryota (0-1) takes on Gerogian judoka and Yoshida Dojo's Levan Razmadze (1-0). The winner will get a future title shot against newly crowned Megaton Champion Kazuhisa Tazawa.
Rounding out the action on Sunday, HEAT 17 takes place from Nagoya with two former K-1 veterans squaring off when Hiromi Amada will defend his HEAT Heavyweight Kick title against Tatsufumi Tomihira and over in Shoot Boxing they kick off the 2011 edition of the Young Ceasar's Cup tournament.
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3/11 – JEWELS 12th Ring – Tokyo
3/12 – SHOOTO ~ SHOOTOR’S LEGACY 02 – Tokyo
3/13 – SHOOTBOXING ~ Young Caesar Cup – Nagoya
3/13 – DEEP 10th Anniversary DEEP ANNIHILATE! – Tokyo
3/13 – HEAT 17 – Nagoya
3/13 – PANCRASE 2011 IMPRESSIVE TOUR 3.13 – Osaka
Join us here at LiverKick.com as we'll be doing live results and commentary for Fighting Stars Presents: It's Showtime Sporthallen Zuid Amsterdam, the event is live today, March 6th at 8pm CET/2pm EST/11am PST on http://www.showtimefights.com. The show is headlined by Hesdy Gerges squaring off against Daniel Ghita in a heavyweight showdown between two top prospects, as well as L'houcine "Aussie" Ouzgni, a fighter seen as the future of the 70kg division, against a legend in the division, Andy Souwer.
It's Showtime 95kg MAX Championship: Danyo Ilunga (R5. - Decision) Wendell Roche
Heavyweight: Hesdy Gerges (R3. - Decision) Daniel GhitaAdd a comment