This year’s New Year’s Eve show from RIZIN has begun to take shape. After the previously announced rematch between Kyoji Horiguchi and Kai Asakura, promotion officials on Wednesday revealed a number of additional fights for the RIZIN 26 card.
Joining the bantamweight title fight main event are:
Hideo Tokoro vs Shinobu Ota
Ayaka Hamasaki vs Miyuu Yamamoto
Kanna Asakura vs Ai Shimizu
Yuki Motoya vs Naoki Inoue
Ren Hiramoto vs Kyohei Hagiwara
Sudario Tsuyoshi vs Minowaman
Ulka Sasaki vs Kenta Takizawa
All bouts will be contested under MMA rules, though several will be without elbows. Among the standouts, Ayaka Hamasaki, the former Invicta FC atomweight champ, will face Miyuu Yamamoto for the vacant RIZIN super atomweight championship. Also on the card, former UFC fighter Ulka Sasaki returns against Kenta Takizawa, and Minowaman faces Sudario Tsuyoshi.
At 44-years old, Minowaman (Ikuhisa Minowa) is one of the last holdovers from PRIDE. With an absurd record of 65-43-8, the Japanese fighter known for his red speedo has faced the likes of Sakuraba, Cro-Cop, Butterbean, Phil Baroni, Don Frye, Bob Sapp, Hong Man Choi, Sokoudjou, Satoshi Ishii, Oli Thompson, and a host of others.
RIZIN 26 is set to take place at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, just outside Tokyo. 10,000 spectators will be allowed inside the arena in accordance with current Japanese COVID-19 protocols.