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Fighting NEXUS reschedules NEXUS 20 and GAMES 03 for August 29 and 30, respectively

The next editions of Fighting NEXUS have been postponed. Now, the NEXUS 20 and GAMES 03 cards previously scheduled for May 7 and 17, have been relocated to the month of August.

As such, NEXUS 20 will be held at Shinjuku FACE on August 29 (Saturday), while GAMES 03 will take place at Gold's Gym South Tokyo Annex on Sunday (August 30).

Shinjuku Face is an event hall located on the 7th floor of the Humax Pavilion Shinjuku complex, 1-20-1 Kabukicho, Tokyo, Japan.
The venue has a capacity of approximately 600 people and hosts mainly mixed martial arts events, boxing and professional wrestling events (Telecatch).

Gold's Gym South Tokyo Annex (Japan, 〒143-0023 Tokyo, Ota City, Sanno, 2 Chome − 4−1 大 森 駅 前 ビ ル 6F ・ 7F) has previously received other MMA promotions such as ZST (pronounced Zest) and Fighting NEXUS itself.

The postponement was due to the pandemic of the new coronavirus (Sars-Cov-2), the virus responsible for the Covid-19 disease, which caused the declaration of an emergency period in some regions of Japan, including Tokyo.

- “I thought of promoting the show without spectators, but there are many fights in our event, so, even if it was done without an audience, there would still be more than 100 fighters distributed in the two 'cards', in addition to people related to the event and employees of the promotion that would meet on site, so this time we will not consider it as an option ”.- explained Shumpei Yamada, the CEO of Fighting NEXUS, via release.

Fighting NEXUS is a traditional competition in the land of the Rising Sun and it has been striving to become a bridge with other MMA organizations, in addition to expanding the fighter community, so that the sport's prospects - in anticipation of an event to improve and polish your talent - then think: “Let's go to Fighting NEXUS first”.

The promotion has also established itself as a platform capable of absorbing displaced athletes in this sport, whether due to aging, work, negative cartel, recovery from injuries, etc... and by marrying fights between athletes of similar technical level, the event manages to project these fighters to the world.

As professionals also compete in these events, Fighting NEXUS 'cards' have a large number of fights, so it is understandable that they did not choose to hold the tournament without spectators this time.

Fighting NEXUS is the latest victim on a list of MMA events that have been delayed or even canceled in the past few days and which include Pancrase 313 and 314, Deep Cage Impact Osaka, Shooto 0329 and RIZIN 22 and 23.

The only notable event that currently remains on the MMA calendar in Japan is Road to ONE 2, promoted by Shooto, which will take place in Tokyo on April 17 and will feature star Shinya Aoki in the 'main event'.

The good news is that the MMA world on the Asian continent is expected to restart in the second half, similar to the world trend.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 13 / 04 / 2020
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Photo: Shumpei Yamada is the CEO of Fighting NEXUS. The event is one of the most traditional MMA shows in Japan. ( Credits | Courtesy : Shumpei Yamada Personal Collection | Fighting NEXUS ).

Check out what happened at the WTKF event held on April 11 in Belarus

It's MMA, but in a traditional string ring and not in a modern 'cage'. It's kickboxing, not boxing, but heavyweight boxer Alexander Ustinov and boxing promoter Vlad Hrunov are involved, so what difference does it make? We are fortunate to see combat sports of any kind and “live” today.

Vlad Hrunov is the promoter of the World Total Kombat Federation (WTKF) event that usually presents mixed 'cards', with fights of MMA, Kickboxing and Muay Thai. But Hrunov is best known for his boxing work with Roy Jones Jr., the brothers Chudinov and Alexander Ustinov. The WTKF presents a team challenge.

Ustinov, a veteran of K-1 events in Europe and also a former candidate for the heavyweight boxing title, is the captain of one of the teams. Piotr Romankevich, 80 Tatneft Cup +2019 kg champion and former champion of the DSF organization, leads the other side.

Therefore, the most recent edition of the World Total Kombat Federation, dubbed the WTKF Grand Prix: 'Ustinov Team vs Romankevich Team' was held on April 11 in Minsk, the capital of Belarus (or Belarus). The venue for the event was the “Fight House” gym, a small studio where the fights were broadcast to the entire world via Youtube.

No public was allowed on site, as a result of security measures taken to prevent the transmission of the new coronavirus (Sars-Cov-2), the virus responsible for Covid-19 disease.

Other precautions were taken to avoid crowding; for example, each fighter only took one trainer to his 'corner'. The card had only five fights, all featuring athletes from Belarus and the same referee played in all of them.

In the first MMA match, Shamil Dzhamkhatov took just over a minute to get a technical knockout against Maksim Drobnitsa.

But the best moment of the event was in one of the Muay Thai matches in which Danila Ermolenko hit a beautiful high kick to take Aleksandr Kazachenko to the canvas with a knockdown. Kazachenko recovered during the count, but ended up defeated by a technical knockout when the referee judged that he was unable to continue between the second and third rounds.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 12 / 04 / 2020
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Photo : The WKTF MMA & Kickboxing Tournament was broadcast for free on Youtube. Belarus is one of the few countries without restrictions on sporting events because of the new coronavirus. ( Credits | Courtesy : ( C ) World Total Kombat Federation ( WTKF ) | Playback / Youtube ).

Exclusive interview with Daniel Lucena, one of the greatest sports promoters in Brazil

Today we are going to have a chat with this martial arts beast who, in addition to being a professional fighter and fighting teacher, is also the organizer of the Brazilian and International Martial Arts Championship, one of the most traditional tournaments in Latin America, held in the city of Santa Isabel, in the interior of the state of São Paulo.

Mestre Daniel Lucena is a versatile athlete, having started his experience in martial arts with Kung Fu and continuing with Sanda (Chinese Boxing). Later, he started practicing Kickboxing and Jiu-Jítsu.
The athlete won numerous Kung Fu, Full Contact, Light Contact and Jiu-Jitsu championships.

He currently boasts 7th thuen degrees in Kung Fu, 6th dan in Kickboxing and 5th degree in Jiu-Jitsu, in addition to being a specialist in Massotherapy.

As a sports director, Daniel Lucena is an honorary director of the Shaolin International Martial Arts Association (ASIAM) and Vice President of the International Martial Arts Union of America (UIAMA).

UIAMA is recognized in several countries by the main martial arts federations and has members in 15 countries. The purpose of the entity is to unite several styles of martial arts in a single organization, holding seminars and national and international championships, based on the recognition of athletes, teachers and masters.

Check out the exclusive interview below:

1) Master, what led you to have martial arts as your primary segment of life? Have you had any other professional experience outside of sports?

Daniel Lucena : Since I was 6 years old through the encouragement of my older brother - Luiz Vieira de Lucena, Duda - who was a boxer, in other words, a 'boxer' and fought in several tournaments and when he got home he put on gloves boxing him on me along with my other brothers.
And for another reason, this health, since I had “bronchitis”.
Yes, I had experience in politics as Secretary of Sports and Leisure of Santa Isabel-SP, which is my city. Because it is very rewarding to be able to act and can help in the area you know (martial arts) and you end up learning more along with other sports.

2) Have martial arts always been present in your life? Tell us how the idea of ​​organizing championships with different styles of martial arts and contact sports came up?

Daniel Lucena: Always. Since I was a kid, I watched fight movies on TV and once I said (still in my childhood) that one day I would bring together different modalities and masters together in a championship and so I did in 1989, in a disco, with the participation of 5 gyms in that that was my first martial championship.

3) With the current success of MMA and martial arts championships, did you imagine that your events would become traditional and tournaments of debut and passage for athletes that today are big names in the sport?

Daniel Lucena: I, in particular, never imagined that our championship would stand out as much as it stands today. But we see that the work with the purpose of uniting other modalities in a single event was in the taste of the great masters and today our oldest tournament is already 30 years old, thanks to God.

4) In which countries does your association currently have representatives?

Daniel Lucena: Our Shaolin CT today is present in several states in Brazil and in several countries around the world that are already added to our team. These are: Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Peru, Ecuador, Chile, Spain, Japan, China and England.

5) We know about your versatility as an athlete. What are your main titles and disputes?

Daniel Lucena: My titles will tell you a few.
Brazilian Full Contact Champion (the fastest knockout in Brazil in this modality: 10 seconds).
World Champion in Kickboxing and Jiu-Jitsu by UIAMA.
World Jiu-Jitsu champion in 2007 by CBJJE.
Pan American Jiu-Jitsu champion (senior category) by CBJJE.
Vice-Champion of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by CBJJ.
Brazilian Champion of Professional Sanda by CBKFS.
European champion of fights (Sanda) and forms in the Basque Country.
Brazilian Vice-Champion of Total Portuguese Contact by CCTP.
In addition to other titles....

6) Do you currently have a new project? Tell us.

Daniel Lucena: Our new project is to make us grow more with various federations and confederations, which will continue with improvements for athletes, where we can join together so that we also have martial arts classes within schools showing and teaching their philosophy and discipline modalities.

7) What message do you leave for practitioners of martial arts and contact sports in general?

Daniel Lucena: The message that I leave is for you to run behind and make your dreams come true, because only then will you be able to say that you have pursued your goals. Or they may say that they have not yet succeeded, but that they have not yet given up on their goals. Plant goodness and you will reap its fruits.
Hugs to all of the CT Shaolin team, from the beginning student to the most graduated student.
Hugs to my family for always being by my side. Without forgetting the entities that today work in partnership with us.

* Interview given to collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa on 08 / 04 / 2020 | Connection Japan
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Photo: Mestre Daniel Lucena, fighter and one of the biggest promoters of sporting events in Brazil, built his career in Santa Isabel-SP and in several countries around the world. ( Credits | Courtesy : Daniel Lucena personal collection | Disclosure ).

Dana White promises to organize international UFC fights on a private island

UFC 249, to be held on April 18, 2020, has been giving a lot to talk about.
The main card will feature a fight for the interim lightweight belt involving Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje, but the show's “top secret” location has given rise to much speculation.

However, UFC President Dana White gave an interview yesterday to reveal that in the short term, the events will take place in the same location (not yet revealed).

- “I hid this place (which will host UFC 249) for two months. We are setting up a store there. We will promote fights every week ”.- he said, during his recent conversation with TMZ.

Rumors in the US suggest that the next four UFC events could be held at Tachi Palace Casino Resort in Lemoore, California. The resort is owned and operated by the Tachi-Yokut tribe, and is not necessarily subject to regulation by the State Athletic Commission of California.

The arena was once home to the WEC and has also hosted a number of regional MMA events previously. But it is good to remember that this information is not confirmed yet.

On the other hand, the president also stated that he already has a private island guaranteed to promote future events, not least because he may not be able to take all the international fighters to compete in the US.

- “I have a private island that I guaranteed. We are installing the infrastructure now and we will start the fights with international athletes. We have our own planes to take everything that will be needed to the island ”.- White told TMZ, still on Monday.

In addition to taking place behind closed doors (without an audience), White said that precautions will be taken for the next editions of the show.

- “Everyone will be tested and tested and tested. Let's make sure that athletes are healthy, healthy athletic commission, healthy judges, referees, my production staff and everyone there is healthy. We will ensure that everyone is safe before, during and after the fights. ”- he explained.

The top hat is optimistic, because when you have the financial support of ESPN and Endeavor, anything is possible.

But when asked about additional details and the exact location of UFC 249, Dana just said:

- "The location of UFC 249 is ESPN." - White said.

But what about you, dear reader? On which island do you think the next UFC editions will take place? Let us know your predictions in the comments below.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 07 / 04 / 2020
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Photo: Dana White makes a sensational revelation about the UFC's upcoming fights. ( Credits | Courtesy : ( C ) Ultimate Fighting Championship | Endeavor | ESPNMMA | TMZ Sports ).

The MMA show “Road to ONE: 2nd” will be held on April 17th in Japan

The Executive Committee of Shooto Professional MMA Japan changed the date of “Road to ONE: 2nd”, which was scheduled for 12/4. With the postponement, the tournament will be on 17/4 (Friday). The event was scheduled to be held at New Pier Hall, but now the location has also changed.

The show was moved to Shibuya and will take place at "Shibuya TSUTAYA O-EAST".

Shibuya (区 谷 区Shibuya-ku ) is a special wing in Tokyo, Japan, and an important commercial and business center, home to the two busiest railway stations in the world, Shinjuku Station and Shibuya Station.

The slogan for “Road to ONE: 2nd” will be “Is it true or not now?”

The tournament will be broadcast 'live' exclusively on AbemaTV's combat channel.

Last year, Road to ONE: 'Century' was co-promoted by Shooto and Pancrase. The card consisted of a mix of Muay Thai and MMA fights and featured names such as Kleber Koike Erbst and Kiyotaka Shimizu.

The "Road to ONE: 2nd" card will have the fight between "Shinya Aoki and Tomoshige Sera" as the 'main event'.

Shinya Aoki has been active in the rings and cages in Japan and abroad as one of the best mixed martial artists in the world for more than 15 years.
He is the former Shooto, Dream and ONE Championship lightweight champion and was last seen strangling Honorio Banario in ONE: 'Century' part II last October.
In addition, he goes beyond the structure of a mere fighter and carries out his own activities, such as setting up his own company.
Also a writer, Aoki has published articles and editorials on websites and newspapers specializing in sports and has released “Não Leia o Ar” (Gentosha) and “Instinto Forte”.

His opponent, Tomoshige Sera, is a Jiu-Jítsu black belt and Quintet veteran.

Also on the show will be fighter Tsukuru Midorikawa, WKBA world middleweight champion and veteran of the Rebels and Knockout, who had already been hired to compete on a RISE card this month.
Midorikawa is expected to compete in a Muay Thai fight, but his opponent's identity has not yet been released.

In addition, it was also decided that the event will take place without an audience.
This change was announced in order to more faithfully comply with the government's request, including the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, to prevent crowds of onlookers and prevent the spread of the new coronavirus.

Also as part of these measures, devices will be used to check body temperature (thermography) at the entrance to the event site, wash and disinfect hands with alcohol and free distribution of mineral water and gargle cups for fighters and employees, such as ensuring security for them as much as possible as promotion employees.

The use of masks will also be required by all those present, including fighters and referees, except during fights, in the case of athletes.

“Road to ONE: 2nd” is organized by the Shooto Executive Committee, ONEChampionship, AbemaTV, TRIBE TOKYO MMA and Sustain Co. Ltd.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 06 / 04 / 2020
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Photo : The main event of “Road to ONE: 2nd” will be the duel between 'Shinya Aoki and Tomoshige Sera'. ( Credits | Courtesy : Professional Shooto MMA Japan | ( C ) ONE Championship | AbemaTV ).

Herbert “Matagal” signs contract with ONE Championship

Fighter Herbert “Matagal” Batista, representing the RCT team, signed a contract with ONE Championship, Asia's largest MMA organization.

The 29-year-old has a professional history of 15-2-1 and is coming from a ten-win streak.
Of his victories, seven came by submission and five by knockout, a record that could accredit him as an immediate candidate for the lightweight title in the Asian franchise.

The negotiation in favor of the athlete, took place through his managers, Samir Nadaf and Alex Davis.

The ONE Championship had been promoting a series of events behind closed doors (without an audience) in Singapore.
However, current regulations in Singapore require travelers from mainland China (outside Hubei province), Iran, Italy, France, Germany, South Korea, Spain, Japan, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Brunei, Myanmar, Cambodia, Timor - East, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam are quarantined for 14 days.

Brazil was not on the list at the time of writing this article, but the lack of direct flights can be a complication for fighters who are expected to fight in the next ONE cards.

However, experts say the MMA world in Asia is expected to restart in the second half, similar to the world trend.
The events may still adopt a policy of keeping half the audience or less, in order to avoid crowds in the gyms.

The debut of the fighter from the Amazon municipality of Coari can then be scheduled for this period.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 04 / 04 / 2020
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Photo: Fighter from Coari, a town more than 400 km from Manaus, Herbert “Matagal” signs a contract with the largest MMA organization in Asia. (Courtesy | Credits: Herbert Batista Personal Collection | (C) ONE Championship).

The “CHAKURIKI 6-Branko Cikatic Memorial” tournament will be held on May 17th in Osaka

Dojo Chakuriki Japan has announced that it will host an event in memory of the first world heavyweight champion of the K-1 White Cikatic (Croatia), who died on Sunday, March 22.

The “CHAKURIKI 6-Branko Cikatic Memorial-” tournament will be held on May 17 (Sunday), with limited distribution over the Internet.

In the 'main event', the names of Hiromi Amada (a veteran K-1 first class fighter) are already confirmed, who will fight Kazuki Irida (Dream Gate champion) in a heavyweight duel in Kickboxing.

Other interesting fights on the program have also been settled.

Professional fighter Shogun Okamoto challenged Tenshoyama to a fight under the rules of kickboxing for the first time in his career.

Shinya Aoki, Rocky Kawamura and Yoshiaki Fujiwara will also participate in professional wrestling matches (Telecatch).

Nobu Hayashi, representative of Dojo Chakuriki Japan, will participate in a special fight with mixed rules (boxing rules for the 1st Round, Kickboxing rules for the 2nd Round) with PRIDE veteran and boxing champion Yosuke Nishijima.

In the only MMA fight on this 'card', Shunichi Shimizu faces Daiki Yahiro in a confrontation valid for the bantamweight category.

All fighters from Dojo Chakuriki Japan who agreed to participate in the tournament are unanimous in “doing their best” to honor Mr. White Cikatiki - one of the main responsible for the success of K-1, where he participated in many 'cards' - as well as send their condolences to Mr. White's family.

In time.... Due to the spread of the new coronavirus ( Sars-Cov-2 ), the virus responsible for the Covid-19 disease, none of the employees or fans of Dojo Chakuriki Japan can attend Branco's funeral or deposit the flowers in the in front of the tomb of the Croatian fighter.

DOJO ・ CHAKURIKI 康 心 舘
Address: 2 Chome-151-1 Hamadera Motomachi, Nishi Ward, Sakai, Osaka 592-8343, Japan



9th fight: (Main Event) Kickboxing (Heavyweight) - 3R 3min (+1R Extension)
Hiromi Beloved X Kazuki Irita

8th fight: Kikcboxing - 3R 3min (without extension)
Shogun Okamot X Tenshoyama

7th fight: MMA (cock weight) - 2R 5min (no extension)
Shunichi Shimizu X Daiki Yahiro

6th fight: Pro Wrestling - 1 round of 30min
Yoshiaki Fujiwara X Takahisa Matsumoto
* Second special / Toshio Fujiwara

5th fight: Pro Wrestling - 1 round of 30min
Shinya Aoki vs Satoru Suzuki

4th fight: Mixed Rules (1st Round of Boxing and 2nd Round of Kickboxing)
Nobu Hayashi X Yosuke Nishijima

3th fight: Pro Wrestling - 1 round of 15min
Rocky Kawamura X Takahiro TaBaba

2nd fight: Pro Wrestling - 2R 5min (without extension)
Yu Iizuka X Tadashi Sano

1st fight: Kickboxing (Middleweight) - 3R 3min (without extension)
Ryugi Tatsuyoshi X HIROKI

(* the 'card' is subject to change)


SERVICE: Tournament date and time around the world

Japan Time May 17, 2020 (Sun) 19:00 pm-

Croatia Time May 17, 2020 12: 00-

Netherlands Time May 17, 2020 12: 00-

Germany Time May 17, 2020 12: 00-

Brazil Time May 17, 2020 07: 00-

Russian Time (Moscow) May 17, 2020 13:00 pm -


Tournament broadcast URL:


{Youtube}https://youtu.be/GLZvBwZYTmU{/ Youtube}

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 03 / 04 / 2020
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Photo : The “Branco Cikatic Memorial” will be a tournament held without public and with exclusive distribution on the internet. (Courtesy | Credits: Dojo Chakuriki Japan | Disclosure).

Major outbreak in Thailand linked to Muay Thai events

A Muay Thai event held on March 6 in Thailand may be one of the causes of a major outbreak of the new coronavirus (Sars-Cov-2), the virus responsible for the disease Covid-19, in that country. Currently, 72 of the first 322 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus in Thailand can be linked to a trio of Muay Thai shows, one of which took place at Lumpinee Stadium and had about 5.000 fans on March 6, according to Gulf News.

The event was held despite an order three days earlier for all sporting events to be postponed or canceled.

Among the people who came to the stadium that night and contracted Covid-19 are high-ranking celebrities, politicians and military officers, as well as referees, coaches, fighters and even the fight announcer. As of March 23, the number of infections linked to the stadium had exceeded 130 people.

Lumpinee Stadium is owned and operated by the Thai army, which recently announced it would start an investigation.

Rajadamnern Stadium - another sacred temple of Muay Thai in the home country of the 'art of eight weapons' - also continued to host events after the cancellation order.

Preventive measures, adopted in different parts of the world, to combat the spread of the new coronavirus have led many promoters to modify their plans outlined for the next events, postponing them, in order to resume their activities as soon as possible after the deceleration of the outbreak.

Those prosecutors who insist on “rowing against the tide” and looking for solutions to 'circumvent' the measures to fight the spread of the disease, should be held responsible, if it is proven that their activities contributed to the increase in contamination.

The good news is that the world of promoting martial arts events in the country should be restarted in the second half, similar to the world trend.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 01 / 04 / 2020
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Photo: The Thai army will launch an investigation into how Lumpinee Stadium has triggered a series of cases of the new coronavirus. (Courtesy | Credits: Lumpinee Stadium | Disclosure).

News at upcoming MMA events in Japan and South Korea

Gradually, MMA promotions are being restarted in Japan.

The relatively new Japanese promotion WARDOG CAGE FIGHT (existing since 2014 and owned by Akihiro Nagai) will hold three more events in that year 2020, on April 26 (Sunday), July 26 (Sunday) and October 25 (Sunday), all in Osaka city.

After having held an edition in January in partnership with GRACHAN (WARDOG CAGE FIGHT24 x GRACHAN43), the franchise closed with a new sponsor.

- “We will continue to work hard to establish new paths in the combat sports sector with MARION APPAREL, who became our first main sponsor.” - commented Yuki Kakihara, representative of the WARDOG.

Other promotions are also expected to hold their next shows within a 'months' radius.

Professional Shooto Japan will promote Shooto 0329 on March 29, at Korakuen Hall, Tokyo.

Pancrase 313 and Pancrase 314 will be held at Shinkiba Studio Coast on April 12, while Pancrase 315 will be held on May 31, at the same location.

'Deep Jewels 29' and 'Deep 95 Impact' will also promote a double 'card' on May 6, also at Korakuen Hall.

HEAT (based in Nagoya, Aichi), will also promote a tournament in May. The date will be announced shortly.

A series of precautionary measures will be taken by prosecutors due to the pandemic of the new coronavirus (Sars-Cov-2), the virus responsible for the Covid-19 disease.

Among these, the verification of body temperature at the entrance to the event site, the installation of disinfectants in various places in the gym, the free distribution of mineral water and gargle glasses, as well as alcohol for disinfecting hands.

In addition, there will be a decrease in the seats offered for sale to allow a relatively safe distance between the audience present.

The public will also be instructed to enter their name, address and contact information at the time of entry and to prepare for any emergencies during the event.

Remembering that Japan and South Korea already adopt social surveillance protocols, as well as having a smaller population, they have technology for this, something that most other countries around the world do not have. That's why the latter have to put into practice the protocols of social isolation, which - yet - is not the case in the land of the Rising Sun.

Speaking of South Korea, Road FC (one of the most traditional MMA shows in that country) announced the postponement of their tournament scheduled for April 18th. Promoters decided to reschedule the show for the month of June, at the recommendation of the government. In addition, the franchise has already acquired new sponsors for its upcoming events.

Other promotions such as TOP FC and DOUBLE G have also rescheduled their upcoming shows.

The good news is that the MMA world in South Korea is expected to restart in May, similar to the world trend.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 25 / 03 / 2020
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Pictured above: Yuki Kakihara, WARDOG representative announced three more events for this year. Promotion is owned by Akihiro Nagai. ( Courtesy | Credits ( C ) WARDOG | MMA Planet ).

Below: The WARDOG CAGE FIGHT 'flyer'. ( Courtesy | Credits ( C ) WARDOG | Tapology ).

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RIP Branko Cikatić, first K-1 world champion

K-1 legend Branko Cikatić passed away on Monday morning (23 March) in Solin, Croatia. We learned about this through news published on social media and specialized websites. He was 65 and had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. His health had been weakened since 2018, when he suffered a pulmonary embolism. Then he started to deal with several other health problems and got around only with the help of a walker.

In September 2018, Dojo Chakuriki Japan (branch of the famous kickboxing gym, based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands) announced that it had started raising funds to cover the costs of its treatment. Branko was very famous in Japan.

Cikatić was born on October 3, 1954 in Croatia. He practiced kickboxing at Chakuriki Gym in the Netherlands and worked as a 'Kickboxer' mainly in countries on the European continent.

Cikatić became the first champion in the history of K-1, the main 'stand-up' tournament in the world in the 90s and 2000s. The heavyweight athlete had to beat the Changpuek Kiatsongrit fighters on the same night (Thailand), Masaaki Satake (Japan) and Ernesto Hoost (Hoalnda) to win the title on April 30, 1993, date of the inaugural edition of the K-1. That was also the Croatian Tiger's first visit to Japan.
,
Branko also participated in the first “PRIDE” tournament held at Tokyo Dome, on October 11, 1997, when he fought with Ralph White under the rules of 'Pancrase'. The fight ended in 'No Contest', meaning no result (Cikatić kicked White while he was on the ground).

In March 1998, the main fight for “PRIDE.2” was Mark Kerr Vs Branko Cikatić. Fighting under MMA rules, Branko was again disqualified after breaking the rules and holding onto the ropes when Kerr attempted a takedown. The Croatian also hit several illegal elbows in the American.

In his next fight at “PRIDE.7” Cikatić lost via submission to fellow 'Kickboxer' Maurice Smith, who preferred to fight on the ground.

Branko Cikatić's curriculum at Kikcboxing consists of 87 wins (82 knockouts), 9 losses, 1 draw.

Shortly before the end of his sporting career, Cikatić tried acting, playing a villain in the 1997 movie 'Sky Spider', starring Anna Nicole Smith.

After retiring as a fighter, he ran a security company in his native Croatia.

Among his students we can highlight the also legendary Mirko Cro Cop.

In April 2017, Cikatić came to Japan with some of his students who fought at Pancrase and, in November of the same year, brought his disciple Antonio Pratibat to fight on the new K-1.
Pratibat became the first heavyweight champion of the new K-1, to the delight of Cikatić, who has always been delighted with the achievements of his students.

Your family, friends and loved ones are extremely sad, as well as the entire martial arts and contact sports community.

* Text from the collaborator Oriosvaldo Costa. | Written in 24 / 03 / 2020
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Photo : Branko Cikatić, winner of the first K-1, died at dawn on Monday. The fighter also competed in “PRIDE”. ( Courtesy | Credits : ( C ) K-1 Group | ( C ) M-1 Sports Media | Gong kakutogi ).

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