TOKYO - K-1 event producer Sadaharu Tanikawa
met with the press Friday to announce the lineup of the inaugural K-1 World MAX under-63kg (138.6 pounds) Japan Tournament and to provide details about the new division's unusual format.
The first round of the tournament is to have 20 fighters competing for eight places in the next round. Participants in the second stage of the tournament are to be selected by FEG based on performance in the opening round. It is clear that FEG are pushing for crowd-pleasing slugfests with the recent rules changes to eliminate clinch fighting, and now, even winning may not mean progression in a tournament.
DREAM aces Hiroyuki Takaya, Norufumi "Kid" Yamamoto and Hideo Tokoro were intially rumored to be on the card and were featured in FEG official trailers for the event but Daiki "DJ.taiki" Hata is to be the sole DREAM representative. Takaya and Tokoro are now instead listed as possibilities for Dream 14 on May 29th.
The full card and more details are available below.
South Korea's Jae Hee Cheon
is to be the only non-Japanese fighter in the tournament. Cheon is coming into the tournament with wins in 2009 over Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto and Kazuhisa Watanabe.
Tanikawa stated that he would have liked to have included boxing convert, Kazuhisa Watanabe
but an injury as a result of his March 27th loss to Daiki "DJ.taiki" Hata
has kept him off the card.
was successful in his petition to be included in the tournament after initially being left off the list with Tanikawa saying that the KRUSH 60kg tournament champ was too light.
K-1 World MAX 2010 -63kg Japan Tournament 1st Round
Sunday, May 2nd
JCB Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Superfight (K-1 MAX -70kg):
2010 Japan Tournament 1st Round (K-1 MAX -63kg):