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Rena Kubota gets new opponent for Rizin 19

Rena Kubota returns to Japan after losing via submission in her Bellator debut in June.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Rena Kubota has a new opponent just five days before Rizin 19 in Osaka, Japan. Originally booked to face Shawna Ram, Kubota now faces Alexandra Alvare, Rizin president Nobuyuki Sakakibara announced.

According to Sakakibara, Ram withdrew from the bout after suffering a concussion in training.

Ram, who’s 1-0 as a professional MMA fighter, will be replaced by Alvare, who has a 0-3 record with all defeats coming by knockout.

Kubota (8-3), a Japanese shootboxing star, racked up a perfect 6-0 record in MMA before her first defeat, which came in a 2017 Rizin tournament final against Kanna Asakura. She’s gone 2-2 since and was most recently was beaten by Lindsey VanZandt in a crossover appearance at Bellator 222.

Rizin 19 is headlined by light heavyweight champ Jiri Prochazka, who faces Fabio Maldonado in a non-title catchweight bout. The updated card, which includes the quarterfinals of the lightweight grand prix, can be seen below.

Kai Asakura vs. Ulka Sasaki
Jiri Prochazka vs. Fabio Maldonado
Seo Hee Ham vs. Miyuu Yamamoto
Marcos de Souza vs. Keita Nakamura
Rena Kubota vs. Alexandra Alvare
Shoma Shibisai vs. Chang Hee Kim
Tofiq Musaev vs. Damien Brown (lightweight GP)
Johnny Case vs. Roberto Satoshi (lightweight GP)
Patricky Freire vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri (lightweight GP)
Luiz Gustavo vs. Hiroto Uesako (lightweight GP)
Seiki Ueyama vs Taisei Umei (kickboxing)
Shintaro Matsukura vs. Takuma Konishi (kickboxing)

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