Rizin Announces Bantamweight Quarterfinals
Rizin Fighting Federation announced the quarter-final matchups for its bantamweight tournament, including Japanese star Kyoji Horiguchi taking on undefeated Brazilian Gabriel Oliveira on Dec. 29 in Saitama, Japan.
Horiguchi stopped Hideo Tokoro in less than two minutes back in July, and Oliveira earned a spot in the tournament due to a brutal knockout over Tatsuya Kawajiri in his promotional debut in October.
The semifinals and final will take place at the Saitama Super Arena on Dec. 31.
The winner of Horiguchi-Oliveira will meet whoever advances in Ian McCall vs. Manel Kape. McCall will compete for the first time outside the UFC after not getting a fight inside the Octagon for almost three years. Kape, on the other hand, returns to the Rizin ring after defeating Erson Yamamoto in 71 seconds in October.
The other quarter-final matchups feature Takafumi Otsuka vs. Khalid Taha and Kevin Petshi vs. Shintaro Ishiwatari, while UFC veteran Anthony Birchak takes on Je Hoon Moon in the reserve bout.
Rizin FF also officially announced a light heavyweight clash between Karl Albrektsson and Jiri Prochazka, who holds a 4-1 record in the promotion, with his sole defeat coming against Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal in a 2015 tournament.