An early promo clip has been released for September's Sengoku X, and aside from World Victory Road continuing to push their Olympic judokas, it's got a few interesting faces who I hadn't yet seen mentioned as participating. They include new Lightweight King of Pancrase Maximo Blanco (3-2-1, 1 NC), former "Super High School Student" and FWGP participant Tetsuya Yamada (3-1) and Wanderlei clone Fabio Silva (11-5). Of course, Satoshi Ishii is also featured in the video, but I don't think we'll see him fighting before New Year's, if then.
Thanks to Nightmare of Battle for the tip; head over there to check out the Sengoku Gold Cup South Korean qualifiers, as well as the "dark match" finals of the true Gold Cup from last week's Sengoku IX.
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Beginning with its "43rd Impact" event on August 23rd, DEEP will implement a rule change wherein five judges (including the referee) will render decisions in championship bouts instead of three. DEEP will also adopt the "must" system, where a judge is required to choose a fighter as the winner if he or she has scored the bout a draw. The promotion hopes this will help prevent stalemates and poor decisions. I'm all for fewer draws, but as we saw at the last Sengoku event, the right fighter doesn't always win when the "must" rule is implemented.
"43rd Impact" will host two title fights: Masakazu Imanari (16-7-1) returns from a limp DREAM FWGP bid to defend his bantamweight strap against Tomohiko Hori (10-4-3), and UFC vet Dokonjonosuke Mishima (19-6-2) defends his featherweight title against AACC's Takafumi Otsuka (8-4-1).
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#1 ranked flyweight Noburo "Shinpei" Tahara (7-3-1) took a unanimous decision over Guam's Jesse Taitano (5-4-2) in the main event of Shooto's "Gig Saitama 01" on Sunday. This should put Tahara on course for a rematch with #2 ranked Rambaa "M-16" Somdet (6-2), who is without an opponent but scheduled to participate at "Revolutionary Exchanges 3" in November. Somdet won their first meeting via decision last September, but has not fought in Shooto since.
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Jewels held its second live "talk show" in Tokyo on Sunday, and the pairings for the opening round of the upcoming Shoot Boxing "Girl's S-Cup" were unveiled by Shoot Boxing founder Caesar Takeshi.
The first tournament bout will see young phenom Rena take on experienced MMA vet Masako Yoshida in a match-up which should produce a battle. The woman Rena is hoping to face at some point in the evening is, of course, set up on the opposite side of the bracket: Muay Thai specialist Su Jeong Lim opens up her evening against Valkyrie featherweight contender "V Hajime." Lim edged out a razor-thin decision over Rena in K-1's first-ever female bout earlier this year, and Rena is hungry for revenge. For her part, "V" will be trying to prevent that rematch from happening - she said she's been eating lots of kimchee and will stop her Korean opponent with soybean power.
Also in tournament action will be Saori Ishioka (who gave Megumi Fujii a run for her money in their fight last month) and Misato Tomita. Still without opponents are top Jewels stars Fujii and Yuko "Hiroko" Yamanaka, each booked for single bouts on the card. Full tournament bracket is below; photo via GBRing.
Speaking of Jewels, the promotion announced its own series of "Rough Stone" Grands Prix last week, aimed at building new female MMA stars. There will be four-woman mini-tournaments in the 48kg, 54kg and 60kg classes (105, 119 and 132 lbs., respectively) and the brackets include some exciting names like prized prospect Shizuka Sugiyama (4-0) and Mika Nagano (3-2), who has already faced such high-level talent as Fujii and Ishioka. MMA-Japan has more on the participants, as well as the main event for the September 13th "5th Ring" show.
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- Inaugural Flyweight King of Pancrase Mitsuhisa Sunabe (10-5-3) will make his first title defense at Pancrase's "Changing Tour 5" on October 25th.
- Last (and certainly least), Josh Barnett and Naoya Ogawa won their puroresu tag team match against Bob Sapp and Yoshihiro Takayama at Sunday's Inoki Genome Federation 2nd Anniversary show. Barnett finished Sapp with a sleeper hold at the 10:30 mark.
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Shoot Boxing - Girl's S-Cup
August 23, 2009
Shinagawa Stellar Ball
Shinagawa, Tokyo, Japan
#1 - Tournament Bout - Opening Round
Rena vs. Masako Yoshida
#2 - Tournament Bout - Opening Round
Saori Ishioka vs. Ai Takahashi
#3 - Tournament Bout - Opening Round
Misato Tomita vs. Madoka Okada
#4 - Tournament Bout - Opening Round
"V Hajime" Yamaguchi vs. Su Jeong Lim
Tournament Semifinal #1
Rena/Yoshida vs. Ishioka/Takahashi
Tournament Semifinal #2
Tomita/Okada vs. "V Hajime"/Lim
Semifinal #1 Winner vs. Semifinal #2 Winner