Tamura Outpoints Usui in Shooto
TOKYO -- 2008 rookie MVP Issei Tamura
took a hard-earned decision Sunday over Hayate Usui in
the main event of Shooto Gig Tokyo 2 at Shinjuku FACE.
Game to bang for someone with a day job in the respectable field of
book publishing, the gritty Usui struggled defending against the
explosive Tamura. Tamura shot relentlessly for takedowns and lunged
with quick, heavy right hooks. He landed flush at times, but Usui
stayed lucid for most of the fight, clinching up whenever his
opponent did manage to spark him.
As for the takedowns, Tamura dragged his opponent to the floor
three times and captured Usui's back to threaten with punches. Usui
spun around into Tamura's guard on two occasions, but he could
offer little offense from the top. In the end, all three judges
gave the fight to the Krazy Bee fighter: 20-19, 20-18, 20-18.
Ishizawa made short work of Sakae Kasuya.
After being whipped to the canvas by a Kasuya single-leg takedown,
Ishizawa launched a barrage of up-kicks when Kasuya stood up in his
guard. The first two hit and Kasuya was dazed, allowing Ishizawa to
land three more. Kasuya then dropped to his knees, and referee
Toshiharu Suzuki jumped in for the save at 1:15 in the first
Akagi drew with Fumihiro
Kitahara in their 123-pound two-rounder. Kitahara tenaciously
pressed forward, sticking to a pattern of punches and kicks
followed by takedown attempts. Though Kitahara took Akagi down a
few times, Akagi was difficult to keep on the canvas. As such,
Kitahara won the first round with his relentless strikes and
takedowns, but Akagi stole the second period after taking
Kitahara's back to threaten first with a choke and then with an
armbar. Splitting a round apiece, all three judges ruled the bout a
Shooting Gym Yokohama's resident 115-pound firecracker Junji
“Flying Monkey” Ito notched a win over a tough Kenichi
Sawada. Though Sawada bravely threw tit for tat with Ito, Ito’s
strikes were by far more effective. Taking Sawada's best punches in
order to land bombs of his own, Ito wore Sawada down and hurt him
with a flurry early in the second period. Sawada surged forward
with punches in a desperate effort to fight back. Matador-like, Ito
evaded and used Sawada's momentum to whip him into the corner
before taking his back and sinking the fight-ending rear-naked
choke, rendering Sawada unconscious at the 47-second mark.
“Fight of the Night” honors go to Yuta Nezu and
Masato Sannai. They took it to each other for 10 minutes in a
blistering 132-pound war. Though Sannai valiantly tried to bang
with Nezu, Nezu racked up more damage with his winging hooks and
sharp, resounding low kicks. Nezu also demonstrated dynamic
takedown defense, at one point turning a Sannai takedown into a
kimura off of the ensuing scramble for the catch point. This,
combined with Nezu's heavier hitting, had all three judges favoring
him for the unanimous decision: 20-17, 20-18, 20-18.
Ochi starched Seiji Akao, but
before he could finish him, Akao's corner threw in the towel.
Knocked silly by a huge right straight from Ochi, Akao turned into
the ropes. As he dizzily got to his feet, Ochi lunged to finish but
found referee Suzuki in his way as Akao's towel came sailing over
the ropes at the 2:18 mark in the first period.
In the evening's sole rookie tournament bout, the 115-pound
Sato pitched a shutout on Atsushi
Mochizuki, controlling the grappling in both rounds to get a
20-18 unanimous decision from all three judges.
In other Shooto happenings Sunday, six additional bouts were
announced for the May 10 20th anniversary card, “Shooto Tradition
Final.” In an interesting cross-promotional bout that will pit a
Dream and Shooto alumnus against a Sengoku and Shooto alumnus,
Ishida will face Cage Force lightweight champion Mizuto
Hirota. Strikeforce and longtime Shooto vet Tetsuji Kato
will meet Shooto No. 4-ranked 154-pounder Kenichiro
Togashi. Also, Pacific Rim welterweight champion Yusuke Endo
will face South American welterweight champion Willamy
Additional bouts announced: Top pound-for-pound female mixed
martial artist Megumi Fujii
will meet Dong Hee Kim; “Wicky” Akiyo
Nishiura will fight Takumi Ota; and
Kume will take on Jun Yong Jae.
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