Tenshin Nasukawa (Rizin FF)

Rizin.26 Results: Horiguchi Gains Revenge on Asakura, Nasukawa Dominates Kumandoi

Bryan Henderson Editor-in-Chief

On Thursday, Dec. 31, Rizin Fighting Federation returned to the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan for Rizin.26.

The MMA bill was topped by a highly anticipated rematch between current Rizin bantamweight kingpin Kai Asakura and former titleholder Kyoji Horiguchi. The two first met in a non-title affair when Horiguchi held both Rizin and Bellator MMA gold. Asakura finished the former UFC flyweight in just over a minute. The rivals were set to fight again at the New Year’s Eve show last year, but a leg injury forced Horiguchi to the sidelines and set the table for a title bout between Asakura and Manel Kape. Kape left with the strap, but it eventually found its way back to Asakura. Horiguchi not only avenged his prior loss, but regained the belt he was forced to vacate.

The world’s top kickboxer also fought on the year-end extravaganza. Tenshin Nasukawa has become a star at a young age. Nasukawa cruised past Muay Thai crossover Kumandoi Phetjaroenvit to maintain his standing at the peak of the mountain.


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The Rizin.26 offering also featured women’s atomweight gold on the line when Ayaka Hamasaki meets Miyuu Yamamoto. The card also served as host for the MMA debuts of Olympic wrestler Shinobu Ota and young kickboxing sensation Ren Hiramoto.

The action aired live via online pay-per-view beginning at 12 a.m. ET.

FULL RESULTS
Kyoji Horiguchi def. Kai Asakura by TKO (strikes). Round 1, 2:48 – for bantamweight title
Kickboxing: Tenshin Nasukawa def. Kumandoi Phetjaroenvit by unanimous decision
Mikuru Asakura def. Satoshi Yamasu by knockout (head kick and punch). Round 1, 4:20
Standing-Only Rules: Takanori Gomi def. Kouzi by majority decision
Ayaka Hamasaki def. Miyuu Yamamoto by submission (scissor choke). Round 1, 1:42 – for atomweight title
Naoki Inoue def. Yuki Motoya by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 1, 3:00
Kleber Koike Erbst def. Kyle Aguon by submission (D’arce choke). Round 1, 4:22
Kyohei Hagiwara def. Ren Hiramoto by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 1:29
Hideo Tokoro def. Shinobu Ota by submission (armbar). Round 2, 2:45
Kickboxing: Yoshinari Nadaka def. Phetmalai Phetjaroenvit by TKO (three knockdowns). Round 1, 2:20
Ulka Sasaki def. Kenta Takizawa by unanimous decision
Kanna Asakura def. Ai Shimizu by unanimous decision
Mixed Rules: Shibatar def. Hiroya Kawabe by submission (armbar). Round 2
Kazuma Kuramoto def. Taiyo Nakahara by TKO (strikes). Round 1, 2:12
Tsuyoshi Sudario def. Ikuhisa Minowa by TKO (strikes). Round 1, 3:19
Sakura Mori vs. Eru Takebayashi ruled a no-contest (Mori earned an armbar finish, but was ineligible to win due to missing weight). Round 1, 1:37