Jewels postergirl Saori “Shooting Star” Ishioka has a busy month ahead. Already tentatively set to compete on the first DEEP card in Macau, China on January 8th, Ishioka will face once-beaten prospect Yuko “Amiba” Oya in a 52kg reserve match at Jewels: “Eleventh Ring” on December 17th.
MMARising.com first learned of Ishioka’s participation on the Jewels card last month and confirmed plans for the bout with Oya with sources earlier this evening. A previously announced fight between Hiroko Yamanaka and Randi Miller is officially off, but Yamanaka will likely remain on the card.
Ishioka (10-5-0) was unable to advance beyond the quarterfinals of the Jewels Lightweight (115-Pound) Queen Tournament, but will now have a chance to re-enter the bracket in a tournament reserve bout against Oya. Ishioka has won three of her last four fights since a competitive loss to Megumi Fujii, but suffered a one-sided defeat to unbeaten Club Barbarian prospect Sakura Nomura on July 31st. Having since defeated Celine Haga, Ishioka will aim for her second straight victory at “Eleventh Ring,” but will face a tough challenge.
Oya (5-1-0), a grappling specialist, has put together three straight wins since suffering her lone career defeat in 2009. She holds a trio of submission victories in mixed martial arts bouts and has also had success in grappling tournaments. At 5’2″, Oya is the same height as Ishioka, but will likely give up a small size and strength advantage to the karate practitioner. However, her submission skills arguably outshine Ishioka’s and a win over one of the top stars in Jewels could propel Oya into the spotlight of title contention.
MMARising.com can now confirm that Randi Miller will no longer compete on the “Eleventh Ring” card against Hiroko Yamanaka. An exact reason for the Olympic Bronze Medallist’s withdrawal from the card has not been announced, though it is believed that she was only under a verbal agreement to compete. Miller had previously been scheduled to face Yamanaka in August, but withdrew from that fight as well. Yamanaka is currently scheduled to remain on the card and a search for a replacement opponent is underway.
Additionally, a 55kg grappling match between former high school sensation Ricaco Yuasa and Mayumi Katouno has also been added to the card. Yuasa has gained critical acclaim for her accomplishments in grappling, but Katouno recently won an advanced no-gi tournament of her own. The matchup is the only grappling contest announced for the card so far, but others may follow.
Jewels: “Eleventh Ring” takes place on December 17th at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan. The event features the finals of the 2010 48kg, 52kg and 56kg Rough Stone Grand Prixs and will also crown the first Jewels Lightweight (115-Pound) Queen Champion.
MMARising.com will be live on-site in Tokyo for the event.
Jewels: “Eleventh Ring” Fight Card (to date; subject to change):
- Saori “Shooting Star” Ishioka vs Yuko “Amiba” Oya (Jewels Lightweight Queen Reserve Bout)
- Seo Hee Ham vs Mika “Future Princess” Nagano (Jewels Lightweight Queen Semi-Final)
- Ayaka Hamasaki vs Sakura Nomura (Jewels Lightweight Queen Semi-Final)
- Winner of Ham/Nagano vs Winner of Hamasaki/Nomura (Jewels Lightweight Queen Final)
- Kikuyo Ishikawa vs Yukiko Seki (48kg Rough Stone Grand Prix Final)
- Hiroko Kitamura vs Mai Ichii (52kg Rough Stone Grand Prix Final)
- Mizuki Inoue vs Asako Saioka (56kg Rough Stone Grand Prix Final)
- Miki Morifuji vs Kinuka Sasaki (Morifuji’s Retirement Match [57kg])
- Shizuka Sugiyama vs Esui (59kg Bout)
- Hiroko Yamanaka vs TBD
- Miyoko Kusaka vs Asami Higa (50kg Bout)
- Emi Murata vs Anna Saito (55kg Bout)
- Ricaco Yuasa vs Mayumi Katouno (55kg Grappling Match)
(Photo Credit: Jewels blog)