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Rizin FF Announces Bantamweight Grand Prix Opening Match-Ups

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Rizin FF’s next event is booked for July 30 at the Saitama Super Arena. It will host the opening round of the promotion’s bantamweight Grand Prix. Three fights have been confirmed for the tournament, including a bout between Kyoji Horiguchi and Hideo Tokoro.

Horiguchi (19-2) is a former UFC title challenger who signed with Rizin FF when his contract expired. He remains one of the world’s top ranked flyweights, but will be moving back to 135 pounds to face veteran Tokoro (43-29-2).

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Another experienced Japanese fighter in the tournament is Takafumi Otsuka (22-13-2). He faces UFC veteran Anthony Birchak (12-4), while the other match-up announced for the opening round pits Keita Ishibashi (8-5) against Germany’s Khalid Taha (10-0).

There are three more fights in the opening round of the tournament which have yet to be announced, while two fighters will be given a bye into the quarterfinals. The eventual winner will receive a check for JPY15,000,000 ($134,000 USD).

The non tournament bouts announced for July 30 include a match-up between two of Japan’s top lightweights with Satoru Kitaoka (40-14-9) booked to face Yusuke Yachi (17-6).

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Source:: mmaweekly