With super typhoon Hagibis set to make landfall early Saturday morning, RIZIN and ONE Championship are in a wait and see situation as the weekend approaches. The Rugby World Cup already has already called off two Saturday matches, but as of now, its business as (almost) usual for RIZIN and ONE. All in all, it’s an interesting mix of action this weekend, with Thailand FC making a return, in addition to three huge events in Japan. Let’s jump right in.
Thailand Fighting Championship will make its return this Saturday night at Phuket Boxing Stadium from 8pm. Organiser Will Chope has pieced together a 10-fight card mixed with pro and amateur MMA, five boxing and one Muay Thai bout. It’s been a long time between drinks for TFC, but the promotion is back to give up-and-coming fighters another platform. ONE Championship superstar Emilio Urrutia will be on hand to call the fights, while the weigh-ins will be held at Island Pokebowl in Phuket on Friday evening from 5pm.
On Saturday RIZIN heads to the Edion Arena in Osaka for RIZIN 19 and the opening round of the highly-anticipated Lightweight Grand Prix. Eight participants were announced including Patricky Freire vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri; Luiz Gustavo vs. Hiroto Uesako; Tofiq Musaev vs. Damien Brown and Johnny Case vs. Roberto de Souza. Also on the bill is Kai Asakura (13-1), who returns to take on former UFC veteran Ulka Sasaki (22-7). The event will also feature super atomweight contenders Ham Seo-Hee (21-8) vs. Miyuu Yamamoto (5-3). Catch the event live on FITE TV.
ONE: CENTURY takes place at the Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo over two huge events this Sunday (13 October). For the first time ever, ONE will hold two back-to-back events on the same day. It’s an ambitious play for ONE, but one which head honcho Chatri Sityodtong believes will pay off in a big way. Sityodtong is already predicting an audience of 70 million viewers. Both cards read like a who’s who list of ONE Championship athletes, from Angela and Christian Lee, to Aung La N Sang, Brandon Vera, Bibiano Fernandes, Demetrious Johnson, Danny Kingad, Rodtang and Xiong Jing Nan. There’s a lot of ways to watch, our best suggestion is to check ONE’s official website for details.
If you still haven’t got your fix by now, the UFC heads to Tampa in Florida for a strawweight contender clash between former champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk and surging contender Michelle Waterson. There’s some interesting storylines in Tamp, none more so than who will next face newly-crown strawweight queen Zhang Weili. Jedrzejczyk (15-3) arrives in Tampa having lost three of her last four fights, but is adamant that a win puts her right back into the No. 1 contender spot. Former RIZIN fighter Kron Gracie makes his second appearance for the UFC and will be looking for a statement win again veteran Cub Swanson. It all goes down early Sunday morning on UFC Fight Pass.