Kyoji Horiguchi will look to avenge his loss to Kai Asakura when the Japanese duo clash, this time for the Rizin bantamweight title, at the promotion’s New Year’s Eve show on Dec. 31 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
The bout was announced by Rizin promoter Nobuyuki Sakakibara during the broadcast of Rizin 19 on Saturday in Osaka, Japan.
Horiguchi joined Asakura in the Rizin ring following his one-sided win over Ulka Sasaki in the co-main event of Saturday’s show. Rising star Asakura shocked the masses in their first clash when he stopped the celebrated Rizin frontrunner just beyond the first minute of their October meeting at Rizn 18.
Speaking in the cage following Asakura’s one-minute onslaught on Sasaki, Horiguchi (28-3-0) indicated that he no longer feels like a champion having lost to Asakura and he handed the 25-year-old his championship title to underline his feelings on the issue. His loss to Asakura snapped an eleven-fight win streak he cultivated between the UFC and Rizin in MMA bouts.
Asakura (14-1-0) is considered one of the hottest properties in Japanese MMA on the back of his shocking finish of Horiguchi. Known for this heavy hands, the 25-year-old is currently on a five-fight win streak and has stopped all but three of his opponents over the course of his 14 victories.