"I feel like I came home. I didn't know anything about him, so I watched some of his fight videos and learned that he was a good striker. I want to make full use of my experience and give my best. I was a lack of training last year, but I seem to be myself again at last. I'm going to enjoy fighting and have a good fight tomorrow."
"He is a well-experienced fighter for sure, but so what? His experience doesn't mean anything to me. Needless to say, he is one of the top fighters. Even though I'm the current world champion, he is more famous than me. This fight means a lot to me and will be my turning point . Whatever the commissioner said, I have decided to return my belt if I lose."
Takeshi "Lion" Inoue:
"If I hadn't seen Rumina Sato fighting in Shooto, I wasn't here now. I understand many fans want to see him wear the belt; however, I'm not going to give him a chance to be a champion. I defeat him, and my ear starts tomorrow."
"His fighting style is not appealing, but he is a very strong fighter. We have trained together once or twice a week for several years. I thought that I was still stronger first several years, but I felt that recently it was reversed. He is younger and grows faster. I'm going to be aggressive from the beginning tomorrow."
Shooto Tradition Road to 20th Anniversary Final
Date: May 10, 2009
Place: JCB Hall, Tokyo
- Bu-kyung Sol (--) vs. Takesuke Kume (77.6kg)
- Megumi Fujii (52kg) vs. Chu Won Bun (51.8kg)
- Akio "Wicky" Nishiura (65kg) vs. Takumi Ota (64.8kg)
- Koutetsu Boku (70kg) vs. Yutaka Ueda (69.9kg)
- Kenichiro Togashi (69.7kg) vs. Tetsuji Kato (69.8kg)
- Mitsuhiro Ishida (69.9kg) vs. Mizuto Hirota (70kg)
- Yusuke Endo (69.9kg) vs. Willan "Chiquerinho" Chiquerim (70kg)
- Takashi Nakakura (70kg) vs. Takanori Gomi (69.9kg)
- Takeshi "Lion" Inoue (65kg) vs. Rumina Sato (65kg)