ROAD FC has been on a tear snapping up some top Japanese talent in its lead up to a 2014 event in that country. Issei Tamura was the first of them signed ahead of its next event on October 12, 2013 in Gumi, South Korea. Now he has an opponent for that card, former Bantamweight Championship contender Song Min-Jong.
Issei Tamura was a Shooto standout from Krazy Bee who was catapulted into the limelight as a last minute replacement at UFC 144 in Japan. He trumped Chinese posterboy Zhang Tiequan to put his record at 7-2, then was handed 18-4 Raphael Assunção and #9 bantamweight T.J. Dillashaw in quick succession. Now released from the promotion, he’s making his debut in South Korea’s ROAD FC (incidentally who’s CEO has long been quick to criticize Tamura’s former employer). He’ll get right to business in working to recover his record on the next event against a worthy Korean opponent.
Song MinJong (we learned is erroneously spelled Min JUNG Song on his Sherdog listing) is a young cracker from Team MAX with a record of 5-6 in his three-year career. As is the case in many lopsided records this early in his career, the numbers don’t tell the complete story. Song faced some good opponents like Tatsuya So, Andrew Leone and Masakatsu Ueda early on which led him to be selected for ROAD FC’s Bantamweight Tournament. He turned his fate around and tore through two opponents in one night in very convincing fashion, and with arguably the best cardio of the entire division. A tooth-and-nails battle for the Championship with Lee KilWoo saw him drop a decision, but gain newfound respect as an up-and-coming fighter.
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ROAD Fighting Championship Announces Issei Tamura’s Opponent to be Song Min-Jong
September 2, 2013 – ROAD Fighting Championship previously announced the signing of Issei Tamura, a three-time UFC veteran and a former Shooto Rookie Tournament Winner. Tamura (7-4) fights out of the well-known Krazy Bee gym in Japan, and he has developed a tough wrestling base with heavy hands. Tamura has notable wins over Zhang Tiequan, Kasuya Toida, and Gustavo Falciroli. ROAD FC is pleased that he will begin the next phase of his career in South Korea and have found his first opponent.
Tamura will face Song “Running Man” Min-Jong of South Korea’s Team MAX. Song was a contender for the ROAD FC Bantamweight Championship. Previously he faced stiff competition in his young career, including Tatsuya So, Kang KyungHo, and Masakatsu Ueda. Song competed in the ROAD FC Bantamweight Tournament and showed incredible heart and a much improved game. He finished two opponents in one night which put him as a finalist against Lee Kil-Woo for the Bantamweight Championship. Song and Lee fought three very exciting rounds, but it was Lee who edged out the decision on the judges’ scorecards and awarded him the fight.
As announced previously for ROAD FC 013, fellow Japanese fighter Riki Fukuda has been signed to ROAD FC and he will make his debut on this card, opponent to be announced. Kume Takasuke will be challenging the Lightweight Champion Nam Yui-Chul in a rematch for the title. ROAD FC 013 in Gumi will also be the Semifinal matches of the Featherweight Tournament: Kwon Bae-Young will face Kosuke Umeda, and Kil Young-Bok will face Choi Mu-Gyum.
More bouts for ROAD FC 013 in Gumi, South Korea on October 12, 2013 will be announced soon.
ROAD Fighting Championship 013 in Gumi, South Korea
12th October, 2013 – J.H. Park Stadium
Lightweight Championship – First Defense
Nam Yui-Chul (Champion) versus Kume Takasuke
Featherweight Tournament Match #2
Kwon Bae-Young versus Kosuke Umeda
Featherweight Tournament Match #1
Kil Young-Bok versus Choi Mu-Gyum
Issei Tamura versus Song Min-Jong
Riki Fukuda versus TBA