Asian MMA

Ayaka Hamasaki, Mina Kurobe, and Ōsunaarashi added to RIZIN 13

Image for Ayaka Hamasaki, Mina Kurobe, and Ōsunaarashi added to RIZIN 13

Over the weekend, an incredible RIZIN 11 took place at the Saitama Super Arena. Amidst the chaos, we received a few announcements regarding September’s RIZIN 13 show.

In a fantastic atomweight contest, former Invicta titleholder Ayaka Hamasaki returns to RIZIN to take on equally seasoned DEEP JEWELS Champion; Mina Kurobe.

Along with this, famous sumo wrestler, Ōsunaarashi will follow in the footsteps of Baruto as he signs with RIZIN Fighting Federation to make his professional fighting debut.

After rumblings of her retiring following the bout with Alyssa Garcia at RIZIN 10, former Invicta FC Atomweight Champion and Japanese veteran Ayaka Hamasaki (15-2) will, in fact, return to the ring.

Following a loss to a then 10-0 Claudia Gadelha in 2013, Hamasaki – who was also undefeated at 9-0 – returned to her natural weight class of 105 lbs. She went on to win five-straight, this includes the Invicta atomweight title. Along the way, she picked up some stellar wins, including victories over Mei Yamaguchi, Naho Sugiyama, and Herica Tiburcio.

Whilst holding the 105 lb strap in Invicta, Hamasaki yet again went up to strawweight for a one-off, losing to former Invicta 115 lb champion Livia Renata Souza. After this loss in March of 2017, Hamasaki took one year off from the sport before signing with RIZIN Fighting Federation, defeating Josh Barnett pupil Alyssa Garcia at RIZIN 10 in a hard-fought scramble-fest.

Opposite Hamasaki will be quite arguably her toughest test in a long time in the form of DEEP JEWELS atomweight title-holder Mina Kurobe (12-3).

After beginning her career with a spotless record of 5-0, Kurobe went on to lose two-straight to former victims of Hamasaki. Dropping decisions to Naho Sugiyama and Mei Yamaguchi.

Kurobe followed this up with five-straight wins, amongst this streak we saw her defeat Saori Ishioka, as well as avenge her previous loss to Naho Sugiyama. In 2017, the DEEP JEWELS mainstay traveled to South Korea and challenged for the vacant ROAD FC Atomweight Championship, where she was stopped by “Hamderlei Silva,” Seo Hee Ham.

After defeating Sugiyama prior to the Ham defeat, Mina Kurobe entered South Korea as DEEP JEWELS champion and promptly returned to the organization after to pick up two title defenses, with the most recent bout coming in March of 2018.

Finally, 26-year-old Ōsunaarashi Kintaro is a retired Egyptian sumo wrestler. With multiple championships and gold stars to his name, Ōsunaarashi retired in March of 2018. He reached the rank of Maegashira 1 in 2015 and was essentially forced to retire by the Japan Sumo Association after he was in a car accident and caught driving without a license.

Ōsunaarashi will train with Josh Barnett ahead of his MMA debut. The two met in an exhibition sumo match of sorts a few months back.

RIZIN 13 is slated to take place on September 30, as the promotion returns to the site RIZIN 11 to take over the Saitama Super Arena once again.

No other bouts are announced for the show. Expect the start of RIZIN’s Kickboxing Grand-Prix to take place on this show, however.

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