L-R: Etoh, Kota, Andrade, Okano
(Tue, February 7, 2017) – ROAD Fighting Championship is proud to share the participants of the Japan Trials in DEEP for the $1 Million Lightweight Tournament “Road to A-Sol”.
DEEP Fighting Championship has announced it will host the Japan Trials for the ROAD FC $1 Million Tournament during DEEP Osaka Impact 2017 on March 20. The four fighters who will be vying for seeded entry in the 16-man tournament are four of DEEP’s most competitive fighters.
Shimoishi Kota (17-4, BLOWS) is a brawler with ground skills who has proved his ability in Shooto and DEEP. Since 2013, Kota’s only loss was a decision in a title match to DEEP Champion Satoru Kitaoka. His most recent turnout was a decision win to another ROAD FC Trials contender, Mongolian Khuukhenkhuu Amartuvshin. If Kota wins, could they have a rematch?
Yuki Okano (12-8-1, Mach Dojo) was a long time welterweight contender who made his name as a toe-to-toe striking brutalizer. In his first drop to lightweight, he knocked out fellow Japan Trials competitor Kimihiro Etoh. Okano challenged for the DEEP 70kg belt but came up short and quickly returned to welterweight. Will resuming a lightweight bid put Okano back in contender’s status?
Luiz Andrade (19-17-6, Zendokai Dojo) is a staple of DEEP since 2004 and has become the defacto lightweight gatekeeper. Decision draws to Ken Hamamura and Yukinari Tamura prove just how tough he is, and he hasn’t been finished since 2013. Could Luiz sprint to the finish for the $1 million dollar prize?
Kimihiro Etoh (10-2-2, Wayjutsu Keishukai HEARTS) is a wrestler with a pedigree who set himself into belt contention with a 6-0 streak, until he racked up a draw to Trials participant Luiz and a loss to Trials participant Okano in 2015. However, with a current 3-fight win streak over DEEP’s rankers Tamura and Shigetoshi Iwase, could Etoh expect to be thrust into the pole position for the tournament?
The four participants will be competing at DEEP Osaka Impact 2017 on March 20. The matches will be drawn and announced at GEN Sports Academy in Tokyo on February 12, during the DEEP Future King Tournament.
The regional qualifying will yield the following seeds: China – 2, Southeast Asia – 1, Korea and international – 9, Russia – 1, and Japan – 1 for a total of 14 participants. The remaining two spots will be announced at a later date.
Regional Trials for ROAD FC $1 Million Lightweight Tournament
January 28, 2017 – Southeast Asia Trials at URCC COMPLETE, Reydon Romero Winner
February 11, 2017 – Korea and International Trials Group A at Xiaomi ROAD FC 036
February 25, 2017 – Russia Trials at MFP
March 20, 2017 – Japan Trials in DEEP
April 15, 2017 – Korea and International Trials Group B in ROAD FC
Event: Xiaomi ROAD Fighting Championship 036
Date: Saturday, 11 February, 2017
Place: Jangchung Gymnasium, Seoul, South Korea
Live in Korea on MBC Sports+
Live in China on CCTV
Live in Japan on Abema
Live internationally on Epicentre.tv
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