The signing ceremony of the Pancrase flyweight title fight between SENZO and Yuya Wakamatsu took place on Thursday in Tokyo.
SENZO is 35 years old ex-pro boxer turned MMA fighter. As a pro boxer, SENZO won eastern Japan rookie of the year in 2004, and after about six year of boxing, he switched to MMA in 2011.
Wakamatsu is a 22-year old striker that is currently on a nine-fight win streak. He has finished eight of his last opponents by punches.
Wakamatsu showed up late at this signing ceremony because his master UFC / PRID veteran Ryo Chonan forgot to inform his student about this ceremony, so SENZO was the first one to speak to the media.
“I am not afraid of Wakamatsu’s striking game. He is very talented but honestly, if I stick with my game plan then I should be able to win this fight. But as usual, although I am the champion, I always like to approach all fights with a mind of the challenger. I am sure this is going to be a striking battle so I am emphasizing bit more on boxing sparring in this fight camp.”
Wakamatsu, the winner of 2016 Neo Blood tournament, was modest but sounded very confident, “I am honored to be able to fight a Japan’s top striker like SENZO in the title fight. Therefore, I want to knock him out and prove that I am the best striker in Japan. His left jabs are amazing, and I know he has a strong heart. But if I can land my punches and kicks he should god won to the mat. I believe Pancrase is the strongest MMA promotion in Japan and that’s why I want that belt.”
Sunday, February 4th, 2018
At Shin Kiba Studio Coast, Tokyo, Japan
Doors Open – TBA
Fight Starts – TBA
Confirmed Cards (Subject to Change):
Pancrase Flyweight Championship Bout 5 min / 5R
SENZO (Japan / FREEDOM`OZ) vs Yuya Wakamatsu (Japan / TRIBE TOKYO M.M.A.)
Flyweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Toru Ogawa (Japan / TRIBE TOKYO M.M.A.) vs Shohei (Japan / Masumizu gumi)
Lightweight Bout 5 min / 3R
AKIRA (Japan / Independent) vs Ricardo Tirloni (Brazil / Astra Fight Team)
Women’s flyweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Takayo Hashi (Japan / Wajiu-tsu Keishukai AKZA) vs Barbara Acioly (Brazil / Adois Fight)
Welterweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Hiroyuki Tetsuka (Japan / Hybrid Wrestling Yamada Dojo – TGFC) vs Glaico Franca (Brazil / Astra Fight Team)
Women’s Strawweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Ayaka Miura (Japan / TRIBE TOKYO M.M.A.) vs Seo Yedam (Korea / Paraestra Cheongju)
Featherweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Suguru “Comba-Ouji” Nii (Mach Dojo) vs Ismael Bonfim (Brazil / Cerrado MMA)
Bantamweight Bout 3 min / 3R
Shuichi Kanda (Japan / T-BLOOD) vs Taiyo Hayashi (Japan / CAVE)
Welterweight Bout 3 min / 3R
Akihiro Gono (Japan / GRABAKA) vs Kyohei Wakimoto (Japan / T-REX Jiu-jitsu Academy)
Report by Shu Hirata
Photo courtesy of Bout Review (www.boutreview.com)