Pancrase is soon to crown its lightest ever king.

Officials from the long-running Japanese promotion Monday announced plans to stage a four-man tournament to determine an inaugural 120-pound champion. The newly formed weight class will become Pancrase’s “flyweight” division, while the 125-pound class currently ruled by Kiyotaka Shimizu will be henceforth be known as “super flyweight.”

The flyweight title tournament will kick off during the eighth show of Pancrase’s 2011 “Impressive Tour,” Aug. 7 at Differ Ariake arena in Tokyo. Although opening-round matchups were not revealed Monday, all four participants in the field were announced: Mitsuhisa Sunabe (13-7-4), Hiroyuki Abe (7-3), Takuya Eizumi (8-7) and Yoshihiro Matsunaga (6-5-2).

Tournament semifinals will consist of two five-minute rounds, with the title bout scheduled for three. In the event of a draw, all tournament bouts will use the “must decision” judging system.

Sunabe (Pictured), 31, became Pancrase’s first 125-pound titleholder with a June 2009 knockout of Eizumi. The Okinawan notched one successful defense of his title before having it taken in a February 2010 majority decision loss to Shimizu. Two subsequent title rematches with Shimizu yielded a draw and, most recently, another majority decision defeat. A 10-year veteran of the sport, Sunabe’s record includes wins over Rambaa Somdet, Noboru Tahara and Russ Miura.

A former challenger to Shooto’s 115-pound throne, 34-year-old Abe made his Pancrase debut in April with a second-round submission of Takuma Ishii. Despite a strong opening against “M-16” Somdet, Abe’s July 2010 Shooto title bid was cut short by medical intervention after his eye was swollen shut by the Thai boxer’s strikes.

A participant in Sengoku’s 2010 Asia bantamweight grand prix, Eizumi reached that tournament’s quarterfinals before being eliminated by Shoko Sato. Of Eizumi’s eight victories, seven have come via some form of knockout, while five of his seven losses have come on the judges’ scorecards.

The most diminutive fighter in the field, the tiny-but-powerful Matsunaga stands just 5 feet tall. Nicknamed “Child,” the 25-year-old Zendokai representative is 3-1-1 in his last five starts, most recently coming out on top in a February unanimous decision against Eizumi.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

UFC announces return to London on Feb. 27

  • 22 days ago

The UFC is headed back to London for a Fight Night card on Feb. 27 at the O2 Arena.The last time the UFC was in London was at UFC Fight Night 37 on March 8, 2014. Alexander Gustafsson defeated Jimi M read news >>

Former Invicta FC champ Katja Kankaanpaa announces retirement

  • 24 days ago

One of Invicta FC's best fighters is calling it quits. Katja Kankaanpaa, the former Invicta women's strawweight champion, announced this weekend night that she would be retiring from MMA competition. read news >>

Trading Shots: On Bellator's single-night tourney, and differing expectations

  • 24 days ago

In this week’s Trading Shots, Danny Downes and Ben Fowlkes discuss the upcoming Bellator “Dynamite” event, and wonder whether things like hybrid shows and one-night tournaments are too gimmicky, or j read news >>

Video: Royce Gracie talks Bellator 142 tourney strategy – and chances of return

  • 24 days ago

Royce Gracie has experience in single-night tournaments. And Scott Coker has experience getting fighters to come back after long layoffs. Does that mean Gracie would consider a comeback with Bellator read news >>

41-year-old UFC vet Pedro Rizzo wins in Brazil, announces retirement

  • 25 days ago

Pedro Rizzo returned to action Saturday after a hiatus of more than two years. After a win in his native Brazil, the heavyweight announced his retirement. Filed under: News read news >>

Pedro Rizzo announces retirement following TKO win in Brazil

  • 25 days ago

Another Brazilian heavyweight has announced his retirement from the sport of mixed martial arts. Days after Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira’s announcement that he will no longer fight, fellow UFC veteran Pe read news >>

Invicta FC 14 weigh-in results: Evinger vs. Kianzad now non-title after weight issues

  • 26 days ago

One fighter missing weight for a championship main event is not unheard of, but it’s extremely rare to see both fighters miss the mark on the scales. That’s exactly what happened at Invicta FC 14.Fil read news >>

'King Mo' Lawal doesn't see Bellator 142 tourney as big deal: 'It's just two fights'

  • 26 days ago

Muhammed Lawal said he doesn’t view Bellator 142’s one-night light heavyweight tournament as the daunting task others have built it up to be.Filed under: Bellator, Featured, News read news >>

Watch Pancrase live stream on UFC Fight Pass beginning Oct. 4

  • 28 days ago

Longtime mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion and international darling "Pancrase" is now a member of the UFC Fight Pass family and will begin streaming live combat sports events on Oct. 4, 2015. Pancr read news >>

UFC Announces the Bantamweight Title Fight We've All Been Hoping for

  • 28 days ago

The UFC has chosen the next challenger for TJ Dillashaw's bantamweight crown...and it's an interesting, albeit unsurprising, choice. On January 17 at UFC Fight Night 81, Dillashaw will take on former read news >>