ROAD FC 20 will take place on December 14, 2014 in Seoul, South Korea. It will be headlined by the Bantamweight title match between Lee Kil-Woo and Lee Yoon-Jun, and Korea’s shining star Song Ga-Yeon will take on Satomi Takano.
Song garnered public attention through videos of her in kickboxing matches with guys when she was barely 16-years old. When she turned to MMA, ROAD FC boss Jung Moon-Hong walked into the gym she was training at and a chance meeting ensued. He was flabbergasted that this pretty young woman was there to be a fighter, not just someone’s shoulder candy.
Fast forward a year, and after Song got her 15 minutes of introductory fame as the “round girl kick boxer”, she landed a shot on Korean TV show “Roommates” and a spot on Team ONE at the official ROAD FC Gym. Song made her MMA debut against Emi Yamamoto at ROAD FC 17 in August, and outclassed her amateur-turned-pro MMA opponent in every way. Song’s aggression, apart from her convincing technique, made a convincing statement that she was ripe for the sport.
Song’s next challenge will be tough. She’s facing a young woman from Japan who’s already walked a mile in her shoes as Japan’s “hot prospect”, Satomi “Sarami” Takano. Takano is 24-years old and started her MMA journey 2 years ago, winning her first two matches in Jewels. From there, things got rough as she was handed greater opponents since the women’s division in Asia doesn’t leave much room for the small fish to swim before facing the sharks.
Takano has dropped her last three bouts – but the sharks she swam with were SugiRock, Saori Ishioka, and grappling whiz Mina Kurobe. Kurobe got Takano in a back choke that had to be stopped by the ref because she was not going to tap. Takano is a grappler in her own right with a recent grappling match win at DEEP Jewels 5 for the purple belt.
Song is facing a tough challenge possibly too early in her career, but this is the general state of women’s MMA in Asia. Takano has her reputation on the line for this one. Song should keep it standing and use her forte, whereas Takano will try to contest it on the ground. Takano’s takedowns are good, and should Song succumb to one or nail a throw of her own, she’d better get the top position or get out of the water because she’ll be swimming with the sharks.