Earlier today, REBELS held a two-part event, REBELS.13 and the first installment of REBELS Muay Thai, in which all fights are full contact. The headliner was an S-Cup playoff to determine the last participant between Henri van Opstal and Yuichiro Nagashima, as well as a REBELS 65kg title fight.
In the night's main event, Henri van Opstal improved to 5-0 against Japanese opposition with a unanimous decision of Yuichiro "Jienotsu" Nagashima on scores of 29-28 and 30-29(x2). Nagashima was surprisingly close in this fight considering how bad he looked against Kenmun in K-1 last year. van Opstal (19-3-0) is on a 3-fight winning streak and with this win, puts himself in his 2nd straight S-Cup. With a relatively week field, van Opstal could easily find himself making it to the finals and possibly facing off against fellow teammate and mentor Andy Souwer. Nagashima (19-5-0, 13 KO) takes just his 2nd kickboxing fight in as many years, focusing on pro wrestling with K-1's recent sale. He looks to have been much improved from his fight last year, but still wasn't good enough to beat van Opstal. He is set to fight at Glory 4 Tokyo on December 2nd.
In a rematch from REBELS.12, Zen Fujita won a unanimous decision over MA Kick Super Lightweight champion Mohan Dragon on scores of 30-28 and 29-28(x2) to win the inaugural REBELS 65kg title. The two fought in July to a 5 round draw for what was then the It's Showtime Japan 65kg title, before Glory's acquisition of It's Showtime. I would have expected the 3 round fight to favor Mohan Dragon, who throws almost every strike with full power, but Fujita was able to take the decision in the shorter fight. Fujita improves to 2-1-1 on the year, while Mohan Dragon tastes defeat for the first time. I would definitely like to see both of these guys in Krush's planned 67kg tournament.
At 85kg, It's Showtime Japan 95kg champ Toshio Matsumoto won a majority decision over Hidekazu Kimura on scores of 29-29, 29-28 and 30-29. Matsumoto (38-9-6, 30 KO) has now won 9 in a row since dropping down from Heavyweight and is set to fight at Glory 4 Tokyo on December 2nd. Kimura falls to 1-2 on the year, losing to recently crowned RISE Heavyweight champ Kengo Shimizu at RISE 87.
At 70kg, Hinata took another easy win, this time a 2nd round KO of Norihisa Amimoto. Hinata (24-13-1, 8 KO) is 3-3 this year, with losses to Andy Ristie, Henri van Opstal and Warren Stevelmans and wins over an undersized Zen Fujita, Kang Jung-woo and now Amimoto. While Hinata has the talent to hang with top guys, he has not scored a quality win since his upset of Arthur Kyshenko over 2 years ago.
Also on the REBELS.13 portion of the card was Shootboxing vet Kazuyuki Fushimi possibly earning himself a shot at REBELS 55kg champ Hiroaki Mizuhara with a win over Taisuke Degai. Also, Sho Ogawa had his 4-fight win streak snapped by Tatsuya Inaishi.
The headliner for the REBELS Muay Thai 1 portion of the card saw WPMF Japan Welterweight champ T-98 and former Rajadamnern Stadium ranker Semsan Sor Sompung fight to a majority draw. T-98 had won 7 straight coming into this fight including winning his WPMF Japan title and winning a fight in Thailand. Along with Yuya Yamato, he is one of the top fighters in the 67kg division and although he fights almost entirely under full contact rules, he would be a great addition to the Krush 67kg tournament.
WPMF Japan Super Featherweight champion SHIGERU defended his title for the first time with a unanimous decision over Tomoaki Suehiro on scores of 49-47, 49-48 and 49-46. SHIGERU (8-0-1, 1 KO) remains undefeated, having won 3 in a row since the first blemish on his record, though he avenged that draw with a win over the man who gave it to him, Takahiro Fujimaki, and most recently handed DEEP*KICK 65kg champ Hiroto Yamaguchi his first pro loss. Should he want to fight under Krush rules, SHIGERU definitely deserves a shot in Krush at 58kg or 60kg.
Quick results after the break
70kg Fight: Henri van Opstal def. Yuichiro Nagashima by 3rd round Unanimous Decision (30-29, 30-29, 29-28)
REBELS 65kg Title Fight: Zen Fujita def. Mohan Dragon by 3rd round Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-28)
85kg Fight: Toshio Matsumoto def. Hidekazu Kimura by 3rd round Majority Decision (29-29, 29-28, 30-29)
70kg Fight: Hinata def. Norihisa Amimoto by 2nd round KO (left cross) at 1:52
70kg Fight: Ryoji def. Yusuke Ikei by 3rd round Majority Decision (28-28, 29-28, 29-28)
70kg Fight: Takuma Konishi def. Ichiyo Morimoto by 3rd round Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-29)
55kg Fight: Kazuyuki Fushimi def. Taisuke Degai by 3rd round Majority Decision (29-29, 29-28, 29-28)
61kg Fight: Tatsuya Inaishi def. Sho Ogawa by 3rd round Majority Decision (30-29, 30-29, 29-29)
57.5kg Fight: Ryoma Hasumi def. Fukashi by 3rd round Majority Decision (29-29, 29-28, 29-28)
55kg Fight: Masayoshi Kunimoto and Masaaki Takeuchi fought to a 3rd round Majority Draw (30-29, 29-29, 29-29)
60kg Fight: Yusuke Nogami def. Seiti Hokao by 3rd round TKO at 2:13
REBELS Muay Thai 1
67kg Fight: T-98 and Semsan Sor Sompong fought to a 5th round Majority Draw (48-49, 48-48, 48-48)
WPMF Japan Super Featherweight Title Fight: SHIGERU (c) def. Tomoaki Suehiro by 5th round Unanimous Decision (49-47, 49-48, 49-46)
WPMF Japan Middleweight Title Fight: Kenichi Iritsuki def. Takayuki Weerasakreck (c) by 5th round Unanimous Decision (48-47, 49-48, 49-48)
55kg Fight: Geenpet So Jacky def. Hidemaru by 3rd round TKO (cut) at 1:09
57kg Fight: Daiki Nagashima def. Hakuro by 3rd round Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
63.5kg Fight: Masataka Maeda def. NIZUMAX! by 3rd round Unanimous Decision (29-26, 29-28, 29-27)
51kg Fight: Seira Arigaki and Itsuka fought to a 3rd round Majority Draw (29-29, 29-29, 29-28)
46kg Fight: Momoka def. Tomomi Soda by 3rd round Majority Decision (30-29, 30-29, 29-29)
55kg Fight: Atsushi and Yu Kobayashi fought to a 3rd round Majority Draw (30-29, 29-29, 29-29)
Dave Walsh has been covering MMA and Kickboxing since 2007 before changing his focus solely to Kickboxing in 2009, launching what was the only English-language site dedicated to giving Kickboxing similar coverage to what MMA receives. He was the co-founder of HeadKickLegend and now LiverKick. He resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico where he works as a writer of all trades.
His second novel, Terminus Cycle, is available now via Kindle and Paperback.
Dave (a) LiverKick dot com.Website: www.dvewlsh.com