PANCRASE 256: KOP Ishiwatari set for challenger “Guillotine” Saito, Legend FC Champ Kawanago returns

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Pancrase 256, the promotion’s first card of 2014 on February 2 sees Bantamweight King of Pancrase Shintaro Ishiwatari defend his title against Yo “Guillotine” Saito.

Shintaro Ishiwatari, the 2-time defending King of Pancrase, had a very interesting 2013. Ishiwatari experienced his first KO by Kyoji Horiguchi since way back in 2009 and then surprisingly had to work for a majority decision against last minute fill-in Alan Yamaniwa. Neither were title shots, so his first fight of 2014 has a lot riding on it.

Eighth-ranked Yo “Guillotine” Saito, on the other hand, had a fantastic 2013. He went four for four with three of those wins coming by head-chopping executioner style, thus the moniker and inspired cosplay getup he wears at every chance now. He won’t have his black lycra-suited henchmen in the ring with him as he goes head to head with the King, however with his power level currently maxed, he won’t need them.

Yusuke Kawanago is the first Legend FC Champion to announce a fight since the Hong Kong-based promotion ceased operations. He came back to Pancrase after finishing fellow LFC Champ Ji Xian and Aussie stand out Rob Lisita. “Bancho” is a tough cookie, and can boast that he’s only ever been finished by one person – Takumi Nakayama, Featherweight King of Pancrase.

“Hulk” Oshiro, the 2013 NeoBlood Tournament winner, will be the first fodder Pancrase throws at Kawanago when he returns home to roost. Oshiro’s last match proved he could handle playing with the big dogs as he took Guy Delumeau a full three rounds.

Top ten lightweights Andy Main and Akira Okada face off in a next contender’s match. Main hushed the throngs of “A”B lovers when he silenced the stand out at #250, the NeoBlood Finals. Okada did the reverse when Pancrase took on Team Nogueira, and he handily outclassed the more experienced Mauricio Reis.

Grizzled warhorse and #5-ranked Yuki Kondo takes on upstart and # 6-ranked ‘Kazz’ in what is bound to be a bloody welterweight showdown. First NeoBlood winner Takafumi Ito takes on last NeoBlood winner Akihito Hara. Tatsuya So, AB, Chris Man, Hiroshi Tomita, and “Hiro” Rider also see action at the first event of 2014.

It will be a very busy day for Pancrase, as along with the nineteen matches of the day, the 2014 NeoBlood Tournament qualifying matches will be held.

February 2, 2014
Differ Ariake
Tokyo, Japan

Main Card

#14 Bantamweight King of Pancrase Championship Match – メインイベント バンタム級K.O.P.T. 5分3ラウンド
Shintaro Ishiwatari (16-5-4) 石渡伸太郎 (CAVE) Champion
Yo ‘The Guillotine’ Saito (13-8-3) 齊藤曜 (和術慧舟會トイカツ道場) #8 ranked

#13 – Lightweight Semifinal
Andy Main (7-1) アンディ・メイン (チーム ナム・ファン) 5th Ranked
Akira Okada (7-3-2) アキラ (久我山ラスカルジム) 10th ranked

#12 – Welterweight
Yuki Kondo (55-28-9) 近藤有己 (パンクラスism) 5th ranked
Toshikazu ‘Kazz’ Suzuki (7-0-1) (GRABAKA) 6th ranked

#11 – Featherweight
Yusuke ‘Bancho’ Kawanago (13-3-1) 川那子祐輔 (秋本道場jungle junction) Legend FC Featherweight Champion
Hiroyuki ‘Hulk’ Oshiro (3-1-1) ハルク大城 (ボスジム) 2013 NeoBlood Tournament Winner

#10 – Lightweight
Takafumi Ito (37-33-13) 伊藤崇文 (パンクラスism) First NeoBlood Tournament winner
Akihito Hara (9-15-2) 原昭仁 (坂口道場一族) 2013 NeoBlood Class winner

#9 –
Yasutaka Koga (8-1-1) 古賀靖隆 (Lotus世田谷) 2nd ranked
Tatsuya So (13-8-4) 曹竜也 (闘心) 5th ranked

#8 – Flyweight
Takuya Eizumi (12-13-3) 江泉卓哉 (総合格闘技道場武門會) 2nd ranked
Toshio Mitani (3-8) 三谷敏生 (総合格闘技道場コブラ会)

#7 – Lightweight
Hiroki ‘AB’ Aoki (13-8-1) (和術慧舟會駿河道場) 9th ranked
Keigo ‘Chris Man’ Hirayama (17-13-7) クリスMAN (パラエストラ八王子)

#6 –
Masakazu Utsugi (6-5-2) 宇都木正和 (パラエストラ古河) 4th ranked
Yusei Shimokawa (9-9-1) 下川雄生 (ドラゴンテイルジム)

#5 – Lightweight
Juntaro Ami (6-6-1) 網潤太郎 (和術慧舟會AKZA) 2010 NeoBlood Winner
Yutaka Kobayashi (6-15-4) 小林裕/初参戦 (U-FILE CAMP) KOP ISAO’s brother

#4 – Bantamweight
Hiroshi Tomita (12-4-5) 富田浩司 (パンクラス大阪稲垣組)
Daiki Gojima (4-2-1) 合島大樹/初参戦 (ガッツマン)

#3 – Featherweight
Satoshi Inaba (11-8-3) 稲葉聡 (秋本道場jungle junction)
Hidekazu ‘Aniki’ Asakura (5-6-1) 阿仁鬼 (パラエストラ札幌チーム道志)

#2 – Flyweight
Yuya ‘Cider’ Kaneuchi (4-10-5) 金内“サイダー”雄哉 (グレイシーバッハ東京)
Teppei ‘Bull’ Masuda (6-5-2) 増田“BULL”徹平 (総合格闘技道場コブラ会)

#1 – Lightweight
Junya Nishikawa (5-6-1) 西川純矢 (GRABAKA)
Genpei Hayashi (2-2) 林源平 (HEAT)

Preliminary Matches

#5 – Bantamweight
Toshihiro ‘Rider Hiro’ Shimizu (15-14-11) ライダーHIRO (宇留野道場/ハイブリッドファイター)
Kodai Murata (1-1-1) 村田康大/デビュー戦 (ドラゴンテイルジム)

#4 – Super Flyweight
Yusuke Ogikubo (2-3) 荻窪祐輔 (K-PLACE埼玉格闘技道場)
Yu Kuwabara (0-2-1) 桑原悠 (PUREBRED大宮)

#3 – Bantamweight
Chiaki Wakana (5-4-1) 若菜千明 (RANGER品川GYM)
Ryo Iseki (3-5-2) 井関遼 (GRABAKA)

#2 – Bantamweight
Katsuhiro Sakanaka (4-3-1) 阪中カツヒロ (LOTUS世田谷)
Akihisa Fukuyama (1-0-2) 福山晄久/デビュー戦 (総合格闘技津田沼道場)

#1 – Featherweight
Kota Kondo (4-4-1) 近藤孝太 (ハイブリッドレスリング山田道場)
Takayuki Ijima (4-1) 飯嶋貴幸 (NATURAL9)

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