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LiverKick.com Rankings


Heavyweight (Per 4/15)
1. Rico Verhoeven
2. Daniel Ghita
3. Gokhan Saki
4. Tyrone Spong
5. Peter Aerts
6. Errol Zimmerman up
7. Benjamin Adegbuyiup
8. Ismael Londt up
9. Hesdy Gerges up
10. Ben Edwards up

Light HW (per 4/15)
1. Gokhan Saki up
2. Tyrone Spong down
3. Danyo Ilunga
4. Nathan Corbett down
5. Saulo Cavalari

Middleweight (per 4/15)
1. Wayne Barrett
2. Joe Schilling
3. Artem Levin
4. Steven Wakeling
5. Franci Grajs

Welterweight (per 4/15)
1. Nieky Holzken 
2. Joseph Valtellini 
3. Simon Marcus
4. Marc de Bonte
5. Aussie Ouzgni

 

70kg (Per 4/15)
1. Davit Kiriaup
2. Andy Ristiedown
3. Robin van Roosmalendown
4. Giorgio Petrosyandown
5. Murthel Groenhart
6. Buakaw Banchamek
7. Dzhabar Askerov
8. Ky Hollenbeckup
9. Aikprachaup
10. Enriko Kehlup

65kg (per 1/20)
1. Masaaki Noiri
2. Mosab Amraniup
3. Yuta Kubo down
4. Sagetdao
5. Liam Harrison

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France, whether people know or not, is a hotbed for talented kickboxers and nak muays. Many of the fighters aren't well known, flying under the radar, mostly fighting on the strong French scene. Albert Chey is one of the best fighters in France, yet he is virtually unknown outside of France. The fact that he fights around 57-60kg, a weight that only the hardcore follow, adds to his struggle to gain recognition.

Chey is a very well rounded fighter, able to generate proficient offense with punches, kicks, knees and elbows. His skillset is far above a typical farang fighter. One facet where he is especially head and shoulders above most of his farang counterparts is his clinch game. His clinch game has really only been surpassed by Thais that he's fought but he still managed to pull off the wins. His wins over Thais include a fourth round stoppage of Petchbangprang Kaewsamrit and a clear decision over the #6 Lumpinee Stadium ranked at 122lbs, Tong Puideenaidee (Granted, the fight was two weeks after Tong fought Sam-A and Chey was a bit bigger).

In his fight against Petchbangprang Kaewsamrit, Chey was outskilled but made up for it with his power. In the second round, Chey knocked Petchbangprang down with a right cross off a low kick. He finished off Petchbangprang in the fourth, the referee forced to call off the bout due to unanswered elbows. This fight was the only one I can find where he was outskilled.

One familiar name on his resume is Karim Bennoui. Chey took a cut stoppage in the fifth round over Bennoui in May of 2009. The two will meet again in a week on December 7th in Lyon at the A1 Combat Cup/Fight Code promoted card. Unlike in the past, a win over Bennoui should bring a lot of attention to Chey, as Bennoui has made a name for himself in It's Showtime this year. A win over Bennoui in 2011 may spark interest from bigger promotions. Chey mostly fights in Muay Thai though, so I'm not sure if he would do K-1-like rulesets. If Thai Fight or the Muay Thai Premier League were to have his weight division, he would be a must have.

Chey will likely continue fighting around France and occasionally in Thailand.  Whether he gets an opportunity on the big stage is yet to be seen but all fans of kickfighting should keep an eye on Albert Chey. He's one of the best fighters at his weight outside of Thailand. Keep an eye out for videos of his next fight against Karim Bennoui. Here's his great fight against Petchbangprang Kaewsamrit.

 

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Let's be honest, after a year without K-1's usual Heavyweight tournament there has been a lack of the top Heavyweights in the world going head-to-head, but It's Showtime is looking to change that come January. What is possibly the last Kickboxing bout of both Badr Hari and Gokhan Saki should provide fireworks for fans across the world. It's Showtime went ahead and released a trailer for this upcoming clash of the titans and you can view it here.

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Female fighting in Japan is something different entirely. It has a deeper meaning and has roots that go back many years, as the Japanese have always had a fascination with women in combat. It was evident in how popular Women's Pro Wrestling was in the 80's or how Women's MMA picked up in the 90's and is still creating great prospects, and the same can be said for Kickboxing. Erika Kamimura is young, really young, and she is already a beast. Her coming out party to the world was an exhibition bout against multi-time Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup Champion RENA where Erika absolutely brought it. They recently had a rematch where RENA narrowly escaped defeat, but regardless, Erika has arrived.

Watch this awesome highlight of her and decide for yourself. [source]

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On Saturday we'll see more action in Western Canada as Last Man Standing goes down, featuring a Welterweight tournament with some of Western Canada's best. If you are in the Victoria, BC area make sure to check it out. The main feature is an 8-man Welterweight tournament using K-1 rules, featuring prospect Josh Jauncy.

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Hopefully if you weren't immersed in the world of Shoot Boxing before, you've caught up with the recent Shoot the Shooto show and are sold on Shoot Boxing. It is kind of a sport to itself, but still has its roots deep in the world of Kickboxing. Shoot Boxing is one of the most unique sub-sports imaginable, with Judo throws being a huge part of what makes Shoot Boxing special. In Muay Thai there are sweeps that can earn points, but in Shoot Boxing a full on Ippon is what they are looking for. To help celebrate this, our friend Jill has made a pretty awesome video highlighting the awesome art of the throw and can help explain why Judo has always been my favorite grappling art.

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About a week ago, Krush announced its 2012 schedule, with the biggest announcement being that 60kg and 55kg champions Hirotaka Urabe and Shota Takiya would be making the first defenses of their titles that they won in their respective Krush tournaments back in April. Yesterday, Krush finally announced who their opponents would be and both fights promise fireworks.

In a rematch of the quarterfinals of the Krush 60kg tournament, champion Hirotaka Urabe will look to defend his belt against none other than former AJKF Super Featherweight champion Naoki "Naokick" Ishikawa. The first time the two met, Urabe was coming off of a loss to Masaaki Noiri while Ishikawa was coming off back to back losses to Kizaemon Saiga and Ryuji Kajiwara. For Urabe, that win over Ishikawa started a 6-fight win streak which is still in tact and included him winning the Krush 60kg tournament. Since that fight, Ishikawa is 2-1 with his loss coming in a WBC Japan title fight against Yoshinori Nakasuka and most recently defeating "Kyoken" Yuji Takeuchi in an exciting rematch which saw both fighters on the canvas. After winning that fight, Ishikawa announced he wanted to face the Krush Supernova tournament winner and retire following that bout, so there is a possibility that Ishikawa could announce his retirement following this bout, especially if he were to lose. Hirotaka Urabe should be the favorite heading into this rematch as he seems to fare better under Krush rules than Ishikawa whose knees and clinch work have been all but eliminated since he began fighting under Krush/K-1 rules.

The other title fight announced was 55kg champ Shota Takiya defending his title in a rematch against former AJKF, RISE and M-1 Bantamweight champion and current ISKA World Super Bantamweight champion Nobuchika Terado. The first time they met was also for a title in the finals of a 4-man tournament for the vacant AJKF Bantamweight title, with Terado taking a 5 round decision over Takiya, though it was just Takiya's 9th pro fight. Since, Takiya has gone 10-3 with 7 of those wins coming by KO and he is currently riding a 7-fight win streak which saw him win the Krush tournament over Ryuya Kusakabe. Terado is 7-2 since that fight, though one of his losses was in the quarterfinals of the Krush tournament to Ryuya Kusakabe in a highly entertaining bout which saw both fighters dropped multiple times. In his most recent bout, Terado claimed the ISKA World title by a wide margin. Takiya should be the favorite here as he has improved greatly since their last fight as he holds the edge in power and speed and is one of the hottest fighters in Japan at the moment. However, Terado should not be counted out as he has significant power himself and is tough to put away. This should be an extremely entertaining bout and if it is anything like both of their most recent bouts against Ryuya Kusakabe, could be a contender for fight of the year.

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