RIZIN Announces Four New Fights for RIZIN 18; Adds Scoggins, Hamasaki, and Brooks

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RIZIN FF has announced four more fights for the RIZIN 18 show in Nagoya. The show is to be headlined by RIZN and Bellator bantamweight Champion Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Kai Asakura in a non-title match. There will be some returning fighters along with some debuts.

Kazuma Sone vs. Justin Scoggins

Kazuma Sone and Justin Scoggins will look to snap losing streaks in their RIZIN Returns. Photo courtesy of RIZIN FF.

Former UFC flyweight Justin Scoggins (11-6) will be returning to RIZIN ring taking on former Shooto Pacific Rim featherweight champion Kazuma Sone (23-18-1) in a 61 kg./134 lbs. matchup. Both fighters will be looking for a win as both have lost in their RIZIN debuts. Scoggins, 27, lost to Yuki Motoya (who is on the card taking on Hiromasa Ogikubo) by scissors choke in the first round. Sone, 31, also lost to Motoya by rear naked choke in the second round. Both fighters come from a karate background. Scoggins with traditional kenpo and Sone with Ryukyu kenpo.

With this fight, both fighters will also be looking to snap their losing streaks. Scoggins is on a four fight losing streak and Sone is on a three fight losing streak.

Scoggins was supposed to fight Kai Asakura at RIZIN 15 but had to pull out due to a knee injury.

Fighter quotes:

Kazuma Sone: Thank you very much for such a strong opponent. The American Karate Kid? If that’s the case, I plan to release my Ryukyu Karate so this will be an all-out karate war. I want to win this fight and hope to join the mix of the current 4 bantamweight kings in Japan.”

Justin Scoggins: “I’m honored to return to the RIZIN ring! I’ve been training really hard and believe I’m going to put on one of my best performances yet. I’m excited to get a win over an experienced veteran and progress myself further into contention for a RIZIN world title. My opponent may be experienced but he’s never fought anybody with the unique skills I bring to the table. Fans can look forward to an intense striking display. I plan to dance circles around this guy.”

Ayaka Hamasaki vs Suwanan Boonsorn

Ayaka Hamasaki will look to continue her winning ways as she welcomes Thailand’s Suwanan Boonsorn. Photo courtesy of RIZIN FF.

Ayaka Hamasaki (18-2) will look to continue her domination of the super atomweight division as she faces off against Thailand’s Suwanan “Pocket Rocket” Boonsorn (3-1). This will be a non-title match at 49 kg./108 lbs.

Boonsorn, 23, is from the acclaimed Phuket Top Team camp and is considered one of Thailand’s best in BJJ. She has traveled to different countries to represent her her country in BJJ competitions. Boonsorn is the current Full Metal Dojo atomweight bhampion and all of her wins are by submission. She also is a 5-1 pro boxer and Muay Thai kickboxing champion.

Hamasaki needs no introduction. The 37-year-old is the RIZIN Super Atomweight champion and successfully defended the title at RIZIN 16 against Jinh Yu Frey. The student of JMMA legend Megumi Fuji will look to get another win which would put her on a five fight win streak.

Fighter quotes:

Ayaka Hamasaki: “I will be facing a Thai fighter for the first time in August. Amp has a unique rhythm and I think that she can both strike and grapple. This will be her first RIZIN fight but I will not underestimate anybody. As the current title holder, I want to put on a fun fight that the fans will remember as the best fight of the night.”

Suwanan Boonsorn: “I am very honored to be able to face the number 1 ranked fighter Ayaka Hamasaki on the number 1 platform in the world. I have absolutely no intention of losing, and I plan to beat her and become a Thai legend in Thai women’s MMA.”

Haruo Ochi vs. Jarred Brooks

Haruo Ochi will be Jarred Brooks first opponent in RIZIN. Photo courtesy of RIZIN FF.

In a men’s straweight match at 53 kg./117 lbs. DEEP strawweight champion Haruo Ochi (19-7-2) returns to the RIZIN ring to welcome former UFC fighter Jarred “The Monkey God” Brooks (14-2) back to Japan.

Ochi, 35, is on a seven fight win streak, having not lost since June 2016. His one fight in RIZIN was a knockout win against then Pancrase strawweight champion Mitsuhisa Sunabe at RIZIN 13.

Brooks, 26, fought in the UFC’s flyweight division totaling a record of 2-2. He was released in November of last year despite winning his last fight, a split decision win over Roberto Sanchez. He gained a bit of infamy when he lost of one of fights by self knockout, when he slammed opponent Jose Torres to the ground but wound up knocking himself out accidentally.

Fighter quotes:

Haruo Ochi: “I am very grateful for RIZIN giving me another strawweight fight. And I am very blessed to be matched up with such a tough opponent. Jarred is a fighter who made an impact in the UFC, at a heavier weight class and I’ve always thought that he was the best strawweight in the world. If I can beat Jarred, I know that I can proudly say that I am the best strawweight in the world. I want to show that strawweights can put on exciting fights, and can finish fights. I hope everybody enjoys the 2 best strawweights in the world go at it.”

Jarred Brooks: “I am very excited to make my RIZIN debut. I have always loved competing in Japan. Now to fight for the biggest organization in Japan! Very pleased to sign and fight with this great organization. I think that Haruo Ochi is very well rounded strawweight . But I’m going to come at him like a spider monkey!”

Victor Henry vs. Trent Girdham

Victor Henry and Trent Girdham are both going to look for a memorable win in their RIZIN debuts. Photo courtesy of RIZIN FF.

Making both their debuts in RIZIN will be USA’s Victor Henry (18-4) taking on Australia’s Trent Girdham (11-2) in a 61 kg./134 lbs. bantamweight match.

Henry, 32, is the current DEEP bantamweight champion, having won it in March by defeating Yuki Motoya. He is a protege of Pride, Strikeforce, UFC, and now Bellator fighter Josh Barnett, training out of the UWF USA in California. He is riding a six fight win streak.

Girdham, 21, is a Muay Thai kickboxer and MMA fighter. In Muay Thai he is 16-3-1 with 7 knockouts. He fights out of the famed Tiger Muay Thai camp in Phuket, Thailand under coach George Hickman. He is also a former Aftershock MMA bantamweight champion.

Fighter quotes:

Victor Henry: “Fighting on one of the biggest stages of the world is going to be exciting. I’m glad it’s going to be in front of my Japanese fans that have been with me since I first fought in Japan. I feel like I will have the home advantage. Trent is a very experienced fighter who has also fought on an international stage. Locking up with him is going to be fun, but as the DEEP champion I have to show him hard welcome.

Trent Girdham: “I’m very Excited and proud to be fighting under the RIZIN banner for the first time and returning to Japan to put on one of the most exciting fights of the night on against Victory Henry.”

Updated Card:

Kyoji Horiguchi vs Kai Asakura (61kg. non-title MMA fight)

Kanna Asakura vs Alesha Zappitella (49 kg.)

Manel Kape vs Takeya Mizugaki (61 kg.)

Hiroto Uesako vs Yves Landu (71 kg.)

Takaki Soya vs Yutaro Muramoto (59 kg.)

Ayaka Hamasaki vs Suwanan Boonsorn (49 kg. non-title MMA fight)

Kazuma Sone vs Justin Scoggins (61 kg.)

Haruo Ochi vs Jarred Brooks (53 kg.)

Victor Henry vs Trent Girhdam (61 kg.)

John Wayne Parr vs Danilo Zanolini (Kickboxing 75 kg.)

Ryuji Horio vs Uchu Sakurai (Kickboxing 57 kg.)

Shota Takiya vs Kazuki Osaki (Kickboxing 53 kg.)

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Andrew has been a long time MMA and pro wrestling fan. When he isn't writing about MMA, he is usually training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, playing video games, or going bar hopping (he only drinks on days that end in "y"). He also co-hosts the RIZIN focused podcast "We are RIZIN" which you can listen to on Soundcloud & Stitcher.

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