After a series of exhibition matches, Muay Thai legend Buakaw Banchamek is set to return to Japan to take on Rukiya Anpo, one of the country’s top kickboxers. The highly anticipated bout is scheduled to take place at Rizin 42 on June 5th and will see Buakaw compete in the country where he first rose to global stardom.
At 40 years old, Buakaw will be facing a much younger opponent in a highly competitive contest set for 70 kgs. Despite his age, Buakaw remains a force to be reckoned with in the world of kickboxing. The two-time K-1 Max tournament winner has a wealth of experience under his belt, but he hasn’t competed in a professional bout for some time.
On the other hand, Rukiya Anpo is a former K-1 super lightweight champion who has been in top form as of late, winning his last three fights. Anpo won the title by defeating Kaew Fairtex in 2019 and went on to defeat the Thai in a rematch. With his impressive track record, Anpo will be a formidable opponent for Buakaw, who has been away from the ring for some time.
Buakaw recently caused a stir among Japanese fans when he knocked out Yoshihiro Sato in an exhibition match, a bout that was supposed to be a friendly match without a clear winner. Despite the controversy, Buakaw’s knockout victory demonstrated that he is still a dangerous competitor who can hold his own against younger opponents.
The upcoming bout between Buakaw and Anpo is highly anticipated by fans of both fighters, as well as fans of kickboxing in general. It promises to be an exciting and competitive match, with both fighters bringing their A-game to the ring. With Buakaw looking to prove that he still has what it takes to compete at the highest level, and Anpo aiming to solidify his status as one of Japan’s top kickboxers, this is a bout that fight fans won’t want to miss.
On the other hand, Kota Miura, a popular Japanese fighter and pin-up, is also set to step back into the Rizin ring on May 6th, where he will face kickboxer Ya-Man in a special rules bout at the Ariake Arena in Tokyo. This fight will be Miura’s first match in Japan since September, and it comes after he faced Buakaw in an exhibition kickboxing bout last year, where he suffered a knockout loss.
Apart from his combat sports fame, Miura’s popularity extends beyond that, with his father being one of Japan’s greatest footballers. Moreover, his matinee star looks have helped him amass a significant fan base, despite having fought just a handful of times.
The event will be headlined by former bantamweight champion Kai Asakura, who returns to the ring after his shock defeat to Hiromasa Ougikubo at Rizin 33. Asakura will face Yuki Motoya, who comes into the contest on a five-fight winning streak. The winner of this match could be in pole position for a shot at the vacant bantamweight belt.
In addition, reigning lightweight champion Roberto de Souza will be looking to bounce back from his defeat on Bellator vs. Rizin as he takes on Spike Carlyle. However, de Souza’s belt will not be on the line. Super atomweight champion Seika Izawa will also be competing in a non-title bout against Miyuu Yamamoto, who is on a three-fight losing skid. UFC veteran John Dodson will make his second appearance in the Rizin cage and will face Tatsuki Saomoto, who has four wins out of four for Rizin.
Rizin 42 promises to be an exciting event for combat sports fans, with top-notch fighters from around the world showcasing their skills in Japan.