Shiro Matsumoto (RISE)

Combat Press Kickboxing Rankings: August 2023

As kickboxing continues to grow on a global scale with promotions like GLORY, K-1, ONE Championship, and more, fighters are constantly jockeying for position in the eyes (and rankings) of the media. Every month, Combat Press will compile kickboxing rankings for each weight class from heavyweight to strawweight, as well as the pound-for-pound rankings for both men and women.

Note: the numbers in parentheses represent the fighter’s ranking from the previous month.

Heavyweight (95+ kilograms)
  1. Rico Verhoeven (1)
  2. Kevin Tariq Osaro (2)
  3. Antonio Plazibat (3)
  4. Roman Kryklia (4)
  5. Rade Opačić (5)
  6. Guto Inocente (6)
  7. Levi Rigters (7)
  8. Iraj Azizpour (8)
  9. Sofian Laidouni (9)
  10. Françesko Xhaja (10)

No top-10 fighters were in action this month, so the rankings remain unchanged.


Light Heavyweight (95 kilograms)
  1. Artem Vakhitov (1)
  2. Donegi Abena (2)
  3. Sergej Maslobojev (3)
  4. Nikita Kozlov (4)
  5. Ibrahim El Bouni (5)
  6. Felipe Micheletti (6)
  7. Lukas Achterberg (7)
  8. Ștefan Lătescu (9)
  9. Pascal Touré (10)
  10. Tarik Khababez (-)

Dropped from the rankings: Valeriy Bizyaev (8)

July saw some action at the bottom end of light heavyweight rankings, when No. 9 Ștefan Lătescu knocked out K-Jee with a body punch at the K-1 World Grand Prix 2023 event in Tokyo on Jul. 17. Also, No. 8 Valeriy Bizyaev lost a unanimous decision to Nikita Shostak at RCC 16 on Jul. 28. Bizyaev falls out of the rankings as Lătescu and Pascal Touré move up to the No. 8 and No. 9 positions, respectively. This makes way for GLORY Kickboxing interim light heavyweight champ Tarik Khababez to enter the rankings at No. 10. Khabbez picked up the interim strap in Jun. 2023.

Middleweight (85 kilograms)
  1. Donovan Wisse (1)
  2. Islam Murtazaev (2)
  3. Sergey Ponomarev (3)
  4. César Almeida (4)
  5. Serkan Özçağlayan (5)
  6. Khalid El Bakouri (6)
  7. Sergej Braun (7)
  8. Michael Boapeah (8)
  9. Ulric Bokeme (9)
  10. Eduard Aleksanyan (10)

No top-10 fighters were in action this month, so the rankings remain unchanged.

Welterweight (79 kilograms)
  1. Regian Eersel (1)
  2. Endy Semeleer (2)
  3. Alim Nabiev (3)
  4. Dmitry Menshikov (4)
  5. Mohamed Touchassie (5)
  6. Jay Overmeer (6)
  7. Chico Kwasi (8)
  8. Jamie Bates (9)
  9. Bogdan Shumarov (-)
  10. Constantin Rusu (7)

Dropped from the rankings: Harut Grigorian (10)

The only ranked welterweight in July was No. 7 Constatin Rusu, who ended up losing a third-round TKO to unranked Bogdan Shumarov at ONE Fight Night 12 on Jul. 14. This makes room for Shumarov to enter the rankings at No. 9, as Rusu falls to No. 10. Chico Kwasi and Jamie Bates both move up one spot, and Harut Grigorian falls out of the rankings.

Lightweight (71 kilograms)
  1. Chingiz Allazov (1)
  2. Superbon Singha Mawynn (2)
  3. Marat Grigorian (3)
  4. Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong (4)
  5. Tyjani Beztati (5)
  6. Giorgio Petrosyan (6)
  7. Tayfun Özcan (7)
  8. Jamal Yusupov (8)
  9. Kaito Ono (9)
  10. Mohammed Siasarani (10)

The only lightweight in action in July was tenth-ranked Mohammed Siasarani, who scored a first-round knockout of Satanfah Sitsongpeenong at ONE Friday Fights 26 on Jul. 21. However, this was a Muay Thai fight, and the rankings remain unchanged.

Super Featherweight (68 kilograms)
  1. David Mejia (1)
  2. Jia Aoqi (2)
  3. Rukiya Anpo (3)
  4. Ryota Nakano (5)
  5. Jpmthong Strikegym (-)
  6. Ayinta Ali (4)
  7. Han Wenbao (6)
  8. Zhou Jiaqiang (7)
  9. Meng Gaofeng (8)
  10. Wang Pengfei (9)

Dropped from the rankings: Kona Kato (10)

Two ranked super featherweights were in action in July. At RISE World Series 2023 Osaka on Jul. 2, No. 5 Ryota Nakano knocked out Lee Sung-hyun with a second-round spinning backfist. A couple weeks later, No. 4 Ayinta Ali lost a unanimous decision to Jomthong Strikegym at K-1 World Grand Prix 2023 in Tokyo. This resulted in some movement in the middle of the division with Nakano moving into fourth position, Ali falling to No. 6, and Jomthong entering at No. 5. With the other fighters shifting down, Kona Kato falls out of the rankings.

Featherweight (66 kilograms)
  1. Petchpanomrung Kiatmookao (1)
  2. Petchtanong Petchfergus (2)
  3. Hiroki Akimoto (3)
  4. Tetsuya Yamato (4)
  5. Wei Rui (5)
  6. Kento Haraguchi (6)
  7. Chihiro Suzuki (7)
  8. Kiamran Nabati (8)
  9. Taiju Shiratori (9)
  10. Daizo Sasaki (10)

At RISE World Series 2023 on Jul. 2, the ISKA K-1 -65kg champ Kento Haraguchi scored a first-round knockout of Anvar Boynazarov with a body kick to keep his No. 6 spot in the rankings.

Super Bantamweight (64 kilograms)

  1. Yuki Yoza (1)
  2. Kongnapa Weerasakreck (2)
  3. Zhu Shuai (3)
  4. Taio Asahisa (4)
  5. Jin Ying (5)
  6. Chadd Collins (6)
  7. Yuzuki Satomi (7)
  8. Fumiya Osawa (8)
  9. Chan Hyung Lee (9)
  10. Kan Nakamura (10)

At RISE World Series 2023 in Osaka on Jul. 2, Chan Hyung Lee extended his unbeaten streak to four with a crushing first-round knockout of Yuma Yamaguchi. At K-1 World Grand Prix 2023 in Tokyo, two -64kg athletes were in action. First, No. 8 Fumiya Osawa picked up a unanimous decision over Hisaki Higashimoto. Then, divisional leader Yuki Yoza scored a 43-second knockout by liver kick over Aikmongkol Gaiyanghadao. All three super bantamweights retain their rankings.

Bantamweight (61.2 kilograms)
  1. Takeru Segawa (-)
  2. Leona Pettas (1)
  3. Hirotaka Asahisa (2)
  4. Chan Hyung Lee (4)
  5. Hyuma Hitachi (5)
  6. Yuta Murakoshi (6)
  7. Yuki Kasahara (7)
  8. Chihiro Nakajima (8)
  9. Tomoya Yokoyama (9)
  10. Huang Shuailu (10)

July saw a couple bantamweights in action, and there were also some adjustments due to other circumstances. First, No. 4 Chan Hyung Lee moved up a weight class again to knock out Yuma Yamaguchi, but that has no effect on the bantamweight rankings. No. 10 Huang Shuailu won a TKO victory over Endy Patel at Wu Lin Feng 540.

Going back to June, Takeru Segawa knocked out Bailey Sugden at MTGP Impact in Paris for the vacant ISKA K-1 -61kg title. Having beaten No. 1 Leona Pettas in 2021, Takeru enters the rankings in the No. 1 spot. After signing with ONE Championship in Apr. 2023, we could see some high-profile Takeru fights in the near future.

Another big move for this month was the removal of Ilias Ennahachi. After vacating his ONE flyweight kickboxing title at the beginning of the year due to weight issues, he moved up to 145 pounds to keep his five-year unbeaten streak alive in February. He has been removed from the bantamweight rankings for now, and we will see where he lands after his next fight.

With Takeru entering the rankings, and Ennahachi’s removal, Pettas and Hirotaka Asahisa move down one notch each, and everyone else holds their positions.

Super Flyweight (58 kilograms)
  1. Taito Gunji (1)
  2. Haruto Yasumoto (2)
  3. Toma Tanabe (3)
  4. Shoki Kaneda (4)
  5. Tatsuya Tsubakihara (5)
  6. Wang Junguang (6)
  7. Keisuke Monguchi (7)
  8. Ryusei Kumagai (8)
  9. Riku Morisaka (9)
  10. Shuhei Kumura (10)

In keeping with the general theme of the July results, super flyweight saw two ranked fighters at K-1 World Grand Prix 2023 in Tokyo, and one ranked fighter at RISE World Series 2023 in Osaka. At RISE, No. 7 Keisuke Monguchi bested Kyo Kawakami by majority decision, and he will keep his spot. At K-1 WGP, No. 1 Taito Gunji won a unanimous decision over Dausayam Wor.Wanchai, and No. 3 Toma Tanabe won a third-round TKO victory over View Petchkoson. Both men retain their positions.

Flyweight (56.7 kilograms)
  1. Shiro Matsumoto (1)
  2. Masashi Kumura (2)
  3. Masahiko Suzuki (3)
  4. Akihiro Kaneko (4)
  5. Kompetch Sitsarawatsuer (5)
  6. Koki Osaki (6)
  7. Rui Ebata (7)
  8. Junki Sasaki (8)
  9. Mutsuki Ebata (9)
  10. Jonathan Di Bella (10)

The only flyweight in action in July was No. 1 Shiro Matsumoto, but he went down a weight class to compete in the RISE World Series 2023 -54kg tournament in Osaka. He picked up a unanimous decision over Ruben Seonae, and the flyweight rankings remain unchanged.

Strawweight (54 kilograms and below)
  1. Kazuki Osaki (1)
  2. Toki Tamaru (2)
  3. Ryu Hanaoka (5)
  4. Jin Mandokoro (6)
  5. Kazane Nagai (3)
  6. Toma Kuroda (4)
  7. Issei Ishii (7)
  8. Koji Ikeda (8)
  9. Kazuki Miburo (9)
  10. Ryuki Matsuda (10)

Strawweight was, by far, the busiest division for the month of July with the RISE World Series 2023 -54kg tournament in full swing. In addition to the top-ranked flyweight Shiro Matsumoto dropping down for a win, the quarterfinals saw the top strawweights pick up victories as No. 1 Kazuki Osaki and No. 2 Toki both scored knockouts to move on to the semifinals. They also keep their spots in the rankings. The fourth tournament quarterfinal saw unranked Kumandoi Petchyindee win a unanimous decision over Mohamed Kloua to also advance.

In the tournament reserve bout, third-ranked Kazane Nagai was upset by sixth-ranked Jin Mandokoro. The win pushes Mandokoro up to No. 4, and Kazane moves down to No. 5. Previous No. 5 Ryu Hanaoka jumps ahead to No. 3, as he beat Mandokoro last year, and he’s currently riding a three-fight winning streak.

Also in action was No. 7 Issei Ishii, who scored a win in RWS Muay Thai, which does not affect the kickboxing rankings. Lastly, No. 9 Kazuki Miburo and No. 10 Ryuki Matsuda both won unanimous victories in K-1 World Grand Prix 2023 in Yokohama and HOOST CUP KINGS KYOTO 11, respectively, to hold onto their positions.

  1. Chingiz Allazov (1)
  2. Superbon Singha Mawynn (2)
  3. Marat Grigorian (3)
  4. Kazuki Osaki (4)
  5. Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong (5)
  6. Artem Vakhitov (6)
  7. Wei Rui (7)
  8. Rico Verhoeven (8)
  9. Petchpanomrung Kiatmookao (9)
  10. Taito Gunji (10)

No. 4 Kazuki Osaki and No. 10 Taito Gunji were the only pound-for-pound fighters in action in July, and both won to hold their positions.

Women’s Pound-For-Pound
  1. Tiffany van Soest (1)
  2. Kana Morimoto (2)
  3. Jorina Baars (3)
  4. Sarel de Jong (4)
  5. Miyuu Sugawara (5)
  6. Li Mingrui (6)
  7. Koyuki Miyazaki (8)
  8. Sarah Moussadak (9)
  9. Martine Michieletto (10)
  10. Kira Matsutani (-)

Dropped from the rankings: Phayahong Ayothaya Gym (7)

Three of the pound-for-pound ranked women were in action at the K-1 World Grand Prix 2023 in Tokyo on Jul. 17. No. 2 Kana Morimoto scored a first-round, body-kick knockout on McKenna Wade, and No. 5 Miyuu Sugawara picked up a decision over Dimitra Agathangelidou. No. 7 Phayahong Ayothaya Gym was not so lucky, as she dropped a decision to Kira Matsutani on the same night. This marks her second loss in a row, dropping her from the rankings. Matsutani extends her winning streak to three, with her only professional loss coming at the hands of Sugawara. She enters the rankings at No. 10, shifting up Koyuki Miyazaki, Sarah Moussadak and Martine Michieletto.

Editor’s Note: Fighters are eligible to be ranked if they have competed in the last 18 months. Any fighter that chooses to switch weight classes will be ranked in their previous weight class until they have competed twice in their new division.