It’s a matchup that fans were probably expecting to see inside the Octagon, but instead Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Ian McCall will happen in Japan under RIZIN rules.
The matchup was announced by officials on Wednesday morning, alongside a handful of bouts for the first of five RIZIN events to be held in 2018.
Since signing with the Japanese promotion early last year, Horiguchi (23-2) has gone undefeated. Last December he etched himself into the history books by wining the first-ever Bantamweight Grand Prix with a second round TKO over Shintaro Ishiwatari.
McCall (13-6-1), was not so lucky. After making the jump from the UFC to RIZIN, his debut fight against Manel Kape was was cut short (quite literally) by a deep cut from ring rope left him unable to compete.
RIZIN FF 10 will take place at the Marine Messe in Fukuoka. Also announced is Kunlun’s women’s strawweight champion Zhang Weili, who will face Japanese MMA and wrestling ace, Kanako Murata.
Zhang is a top ranked pound-for-pound female fighter in China on a whopping 16-fight win streak. The Kunlun Champion has been recognised as the top Chinese prospect for years and will now fight in Japan for the second time.
RIZIN’s first female champion Kanna Asakura (10-2) will take on former King of the Cage atomweight champion Melissa Karagianis (3-3) in a 49kg clash. While Manel Kape (9-2) will face former Outsider flyweight champion Kai Asakura (9-1) in a 59kg catch weight bout.
Fresh from a decisive win over Suakim in Japan earlier this week, the 19-year-old kickboxing phenom Tenshin Nasukawa will also compete. His opponent will be named at a later date.