Hello, Japan: Sengoku Gold Cup Match-Ups, Shooto and Pancrase Title Bouts Announced

Pairings for the opening round of the Sengoku Gold Cup were revealed on yesterday's episode of SENGOKU-G.

Here's what they look like:

Bantamweight (60kg)

Daisuke Endo (3-3 / Wajyutsu Keisyukai Suruga)
vs. Takeshi "Ken" Numajiri (1-1 / Kiguchi Dojo)

Makoto "Shin" Takenaka* (1-4 / P's Lab Tokyo)
vs. Ryosuke Komori (3-1 / Yoshida Dojo)

Featherweight (65kg)

Takayuki Kishi (1-2-2 / X-One Gym - Team ZST)
vs. Shigeki Osawa (2-0 / Yoshida Dojo)

Toru Harai (6-2 / Mori Dojo)
vs. Makoto Sannai (1-1 / Gutsman)

Lightweight (70kg)

Koji Ando (2-0-2 / Wajyutsu Keisyukai Tokyo)
vs. Kohei Maruyama (2-0 am. / SK Absolute)

Ikuo Usuda (4-0 / Kiguchi Dojo)
vs. Kota Okazawa (5-1-2 / Team ZST - AXIS)

* It appears Hiroyuki Hara (1-2) has been forced out due to an arm injury and will be replaced by his teammate Takenaka. He was also TKO'd less than a month ago.

- Though not yet officially announced, Shooto's website now lists bantamweight ace "BJ" Kojima's (10-3-5) July 19th opponent as South American bantamweight champ Jussiê Formiga (2-0). Formiga is a Nova Uniao product with only a pair of professional bouts under his belt, though the March Shooto rankings had him in the #6 spot. Kojima's featherweight counterpart, Masakatsu Ueda (9-0-2), will defend his title against Formiga's teammate, the #1 ranked Eduardo "Dudu" Dantas (7-1), on the same card.

- Unpredictable World Victory Road prospect Maximo Blanco (2-2-1, 1 NC) will have a chance to wipe away memories of his recent in-ring troubles on August 8th when he challenges Lightweight King of Pancrase Katsuya Inoue (18-6-4) at Differ Ariake. The Venezuelan botched his return to Sengoku last month by illegally soccer kicking Akihiko Mori seconds after downing the journeyman with a solid right hook. On the heels of that performance, the title shot comes as a bit of a surprise, but a win here by either man would presumably bump them straight into Sengoku. As a member of Yoshia Dojo, Blanco was part of last week's "training camp from hell" in Chiba Prefecture.

Another title match was announced for the August card - which will also hold the 2009 Neo-Blood Tournament Finals - as 7th Middleweight King of Pancrase Izuru Takeuchi (25-10-6) will defend against the #1 ranked, Kazushi Sakuraba-trained Takenori Sato (9-5-4).


Inoue and Blanco (via Sportsnavi)

\The FanPosts are solely the subjective opinions of Bloody Elbow readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Bloody Elbow editors or staff.

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