Kai Asakura and Kyoji Horiguchi are set to kick off the new year in style.
RIZIN has released its official card for it’s New Year’s Eve show, headlined by Asakura (16-2) defending his bantamweight title against Kyoji Horiguchi (28-3). This will be Horiguchi’s first fight since having to vacate his RIZIN and Bellator titles in late 2019.
Horiguchi actually lost to Asakura by first-round knockout when they fought at RIZIN 18, though it was a non-title bout. Asakura then won three of his next four, including a first-round KO of Hiromasa Ougikubo to claim the RIZIN bantamweight championship.
Also slated for the Dec. 31 show are kickboxing star Tenshin Nasukawa, a vacant atomweight title bout between Ayaka Hamasaki and Miyuu Yamamoto, Japanese legend Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa, and Kai’s older brother Mikuru Asakura.
Retired PRIDE and UFC standout Takanori Gomi makes his return to action when he meets Koji Tanaka in a “special standing bout rules” match. The three-round bout will not have an official decision read should it go the distance.
A live pay-per-view stream of the event will be available for English-speaking viewers at www.live-now.com.
See the full RIZIN 26 lineup below:
Kai Asakura vs. Kyoji Horiguchi
Tenshin Nasukawa vs. Kumandoi Phetjaroenvit — kickboxing
Mikuru Asakura vs. Satoshi Yamasu
Takanori Gomi vs. Koji Tanaka — “special standing bout rules”
Ayaka Hamasaki vs. Miyuu Yamamoto
Yuki Motoyo vs. Naoki Inoue
Kyle Aguon vs. Kleber Koike
Kyohei Hagiwara vs. Ren Hiramoto
Hideo Tokoro vs. Shinobu Ota
Yoshinari Nadaka vs. Petmalai Phetjaroenvit — kickboxing
Ulka Sasaki vs. Kenta Takizawa
Taiyo Nakahara vs. Kazuma Kuramoto
Ikuhisa Minowa vs. Tsuyoshi Sudario
Sakura Mori vs. Eru Takebayashi