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Hiroya vs Kajiwara, Terado vs Izawa Added to Krush Events, Final 60kg Tourney Participants Announced

Earlier today, Krush announced that 63kg champ Ryuji Kajiwara would be in a superfight with 2008 K-1 Koshien champion Hiroya at Krush.18 on May 3rd. Kajiwara (21-10-1, 6 KO) is coming in off of his first title defense against Tetsuya Yamato in December where he snatched victory from the jaws of defeat with a late knockdown. Kajiwara has won his last two, and 8 of his last 9. Hiroya (10-5-0, 5 KO) is currently riding a 2-fight losing streak as he lost to Masaaki Noiri in the Krush Youth tournament semis and was upset by Naoki at Big Bang 8 last month. Despite Hiroya’s recent struggles, I think Kajiwara needs to be on upset watch because of the style matchup here. Hiroya is a dynamic striker whose biggest weakness is his defense and Kajiwara has struggled with offensively gifted fighters recently, losing to Masaaki Noiri and needing late knockdowns to get him past Koya Urabe and Tetsuya Yamato. However, Hiroya is susceptible to counter punching, something that was evident in his losses to Tetsuya Yamato and Masaaki Noiri, and even in his wins in the Krush Youth tournament. Kajiwara’s biggest strength is his counter punching. Even if Hiroya is able to control the fight, Kajiwara can swing everything back in his favor with a knockdown, so this fight is more or less a toss up.

Also added to Krush.18 was 55kg champ Shota Takiya in what will most likely be a superfight and the two matches for the 3rd round of the 63kg WILDRUSH Leagues with matchups of Hideaki Yamazaki vs NOMAN and Hitoshi Tsukagoshi vs Naoki Terasaki. This is a key opportunity for Yamazaki to pull away if he wants a comfortable lead as NOMAN was just knocked out and both fighters in 2nd place, Tsukagoshi and TaCa, face difficult matchups this round.

Krush has also made announcements regarding their day-night Krush-EX vol.1 and 2 shows on April 22nd. First, for the day portion, ISKA World Super Bantamweight champ Nobuchika Terado will take on Team Dragon’s Namito Izawa. Terado (27-8-1, 12 KO) is coming off a 71 second knockout at the hands of 55kg champ Shota Takiya in a title fight in January. Izawa most recently fought to a draw at Krush.16. Terado is by and far the better fighter and should by all means win this fight, however this has many elements of an upset. Terado has been in his fair share of brawls and at 31, they could be starting to catch up to him and he is coming off of a fast knockout loss. Izawa is an unproven fighter that trains with an elite team in Team Dragon. If Terado overlooks Izawa, it could prove to be troublesome.

In addition to adding a fight to the day portion, Krush has begun filling out the night portion of the event which is highlighted by the first two rounds of an 8-man tournament to determine 60kg champ Hirotaka Urabe’s next title challenger. First is Makoto Morishige, who Krush fans will remember as Naoki Ishikawa’s bounce-back fight in Krush after a rough 2010. Another addition is Katsuya Goto, who most recently dropped a close decision to Kizaemon Saiga at Krush.16. Also added was Takashi Nakajima (7-2-0) whose most recent fight was a win back in October. Katsuya Goto owns a win over Nakajima from last February. The final participant is Krush Youth tournament participant Fumiya Osawa. Osawa is currently riding a 3-fight losing streak with those losses to Kizaemon Saiga, Sho Ogawa and fellow tournament participant Yuzo Suzuki.

In order to avoid quarterfinal rematches, the opening round of the tournament is Takashi Nakajima vs Yuzo Suzuki, Yuta DYNAMITE vs Katsuya Goto, Fumiya Osawa vs Makoto Morishige and Junpei Aotsu vs Yuya, with the winners of Nakajima-Suzuki and Yuta-Goto in one semifinal and the winners of Osawa-Morishige and Aotsu-Yuya in the other. Right now I think whoever wins the upper portion of the tournament will ultimately win the tournament as it seems to be the deeper half.{jcomments on}

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Giorgio Petrosyan Signs With Glory, Will Fight in May

PetroSometimes I am legitimately taken aback at how certain organizations do business or deal with branding. The branding for the Golden Glory shows has always been confusing to say the least, with the word 'Glory' being involved every time, but the rest seems to fluctuate on a regular basis. The Glory World Series events are set to be Glory's flagship shows, featuring the world's top kickboxers in association with Glory and Total Sports Asia.

There is a new Facebook profile associated with the Glory World Series, titled Glory Sports International, which is indeed official. This is pretty much my point when it comes to branding, as there is yet another "brand name" being tossed around and I'm not quite sure which name to use to discuss the shows. Regardless of brand confusion, there will be three big tournaments taking place this year under the Glory banner; Heavyweight, 85kg and 70kg, and it appears that fears of the tournaments not having top talent might be on hold for a while, as they announced that Giorgio Petrosyan has signed with Glory Sports International to compete in the Glory World Series.

This will without a doubt mean that the 70kg tournament has the best fighter in the weight class under contract, and according to their post he is set to fight in May. It'll be interesting to see if they can secure the Artist Formerly Known as Buakaw Por Pramuk and see the consensus number one and number two involved in the same tournament.

While this clears up some questions about the Glory series, it does make one wonder about the K-1 MAX scene. If there are any plans for a K-1 World MAX tournament this year, the omission of Giorgio Petrosyan would be a glaring hole in the division and crush the legitimacy of the tournament. Hopefully we'll see Petrosyan competing against the best in the world no matter what and not see a fractured Kickboxing world.

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Glory World Series, March 23: Fight Card Headlined By Semmy Schilt

2012 is a big year for Golden Glory, as they've put up a total of a million dollars in prize money for three tournaments. Before the tournaments kick off though, there will be a stacked event on this Friday, March 23 in Moscow, Russia.

Headlining is four time K-1 World Grand Prix champion, Semmy Schilt, as he finally makes his return to the ring after over a year off. As expected, Semmy isn't just going to hop right back in against a top fighter. He'll fight Brice Guidon in a suitable match-up for Semmy to shake off the ring rust. Guidon lost to Gokhan Saki in the finals of last year's heavyweight tournament that United Glory put on. Since then, he's picked up two wins in a row.

Right before Semmy is a big fight in Errol Zimmerman vs. Jerome Le Banner. Zimmerman has been on fire since 2011, having won seven in a row. JLB is still pushing forward and still has enough gas left in the tank to make this fight competitive. The last of the three main fights is friend of LiverKick, Mark Miller taking on Sergei Kharitonov. Mark made his return to the sport last year at the Glory World Series Final, knocking out Nikolaj Falin in just four seconds. Sergei's last fight was in MMA but he knocked out Mighty Mo with a vicious uppercut at the same event that Mark fought at last year.

More kickboxing. In a -98kg bout, light heavyweight-turned heavyweight Ali Cenik continues his stint as a heavyweight against the Lithuanian fighter, SergejMaslobojev. Igor Jurkovic, fresh off a win just over a week ago at Cro Cop Final Fight over Freddy Kemayo, fights K-1 veteran Zabit Samedov in a heavyweight contest. Jamal Ben Saddik, who stopped Rico Verhoeven last year, faces Vitaly Oparin at heavyweight.

Yes, there's some non-heavyweight kickboxing action on the card. Robin van Roosmalen had to pull out of his fight with Dzhabar Askerov so Maxim Vorovski stepped in to replace him in a -72.5kg. Nieky Holzken got slotted into the card just recently and he'll face David Kyria at -73.9kg. That's it for kickboxing, and there's four MMA bouts to start the show. 

You can purchase and watch the event at gfl.tv. Full fight card:

MMA -95 kg Ilir Latifi (Sweden) vs Vladimir Gerasimchik (Russia)

MMA -65 kg Cesario di Domenico (Brazil) vs Murad Machayev (Russia)

MMA -76 kg Anatoly Safranov (Russia) vs Gasan Umalatov (Russia)

MMA HW Ricco Rodriquez (USA) vs Ruslan Magomedov (Russia) 

KB -73,9 kg Nieky Holzken (Netherlands) vs David Kyria (Georgia)

KB -72,5 kg Maxim Vorovski (Russia) vs Dzhabar Askerov (Russia)

KB HW Jamal Ben Sadik (Belgium) vs Vitaly Oparin (Ukraine)

KB HW Igor Jurkovic (Croatia) vs Zabit Samedov (Russia)

KB -98 kg Ali Cenik (Turkey) vs Sergej Maslobojev (Lithuania) 

KB HW Sergei Kharitonov (Russia) vs Mark Miller (USA)

KB HW Errol Zimmerman (Curaçao) vs Jerome Le Banner (France)

KB HW Semmy Schilt (Netherlands) vs Brice Guidon (France)

 

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Capital Punishment 5: Rico Verhoeven Defeats Ben Edwards

Australian promotion Capital Punishment held the 5th edition of their event yesterday in Canberra, Australia. The three main bouts were Ben Edwards vs. Rico Verhoeven, Steve Moxon vs. Wes Capper and Steve McKinnon against Nato Lauuii.

The main event was Rico Verhoeven vs. Ben Edwards, in a fight of two men trying to break into the upper echelon of the heavyweight division. Verhoeven and Edwards had both last fought on the same card for It's Showtime on January 28. Rico got knocked out in the first round by Errol Zimmerman while Ben Edwards cruised to a decision win over Ricardo van den Bos. Verhoeven took a decision win this time and it seems that he almost stopped Edwards which is quite surprising. Apparently he dropped Edwards right at the end of the third round and some are saying Edwards was saved by the bell.

Steve Moxon faced Wes Capper in a battle of two of Australia's best 70kg kickboxers. Moxon won a split decision over Capper and the fight was said to be very close. Both men were apparently given questionable knockdowns in the first round.

Steve McKinnon was originally supposed to fight Antz Nansen, who you may remember from when he stopped Hiroshi Izumi in Sengoku. Another fighter from New Zealand, Nato Lauuii stepped in to face McKinnon. McKinnon ended up stopping Lauuii, winning by TKO. In a battle of two Australians at -64.5kg under full Thai rules, Elliot Compton won a decision over Glen Purvis.

Heavyweight: Rico Verhoeven def. Ben Edwards

70kg: Steven Moxon def. Wes Capper by split decision.

-95kg: Steve McKinnon def. Nato Lauuii by TKO.

-64.5kg FTR: Elliot Compton def. Glen Purvis by decision.

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