2011 Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup Champion Erika Kamimura and tournament runner-up Seo Hee Ham will face off in a rematch under kickboxing rules at Rise 88 on June 2nd in Tokyo, Japan. Rise officials announced the bout on Tuesday. The winner moves on to challenge Rise Queen Rena Kubota.
Kamimura and Ham first met under shoot boxing rules in the finals of the 2011 Girls S-Cup this past August. Down on the scorecards, Kamimura scored a knockdown in the third and final round that proved to be enough to give her a razor-thin Unanimous Decision victory and the Girls S-Cup title.
Kamimura struck first in the August shoot boxing final by trapping Ham in a standing arm-triangle choke to earn a catch point. Ham rallied back with a pair of high-arc throws in the second round to earn two shoot points that put her ahead on the cards. Ham appeared to be in full control early in round three, but Kamimura was able to avoid a throw attempt and dropped Ham with a one-two combination. Ham answered a standing count and aggressively pushed forward with kicks and punches in the final minute, but it was not enough and Kamimura took the decision victory with scores of 28-26 and 28-27 twice. The win earned Kamimura the 2011 Girls S-Cup championship.
In November, Kamimura faced off with two-time Girls S-Cup champion Rena Kubota under kickboxing rules at Rise 85. The bout would crown the first Rise Queen Champion. Surprising many, Kubota upset the heavily favoured Kamimura and got a measure of revenge for an embarrassing exhibition match earlier in the year in which Kamimura was dominant throughout. Scores were 48-46, 47-46 and 46-45 for Kubota in the Rise Queen title fight, but despite her impressive showing, Kubota’s victory ultimately came about as a result of a Kamimura point deduction in round three for excessive clinching. Without the penalty, the close fight would have been ruled a Majority Draw. Kamimura will receive an opportunity to settle the score with Kubota if she can first get past Ham in June.
Ham returns to kickboxing for the first time since a dominant win over Megumi Yabushita in February 2011. In recent years, Ham has devoted more of her time to MMA competition and has twice challenged unsuccessfully for the Jewels Lightweight Queen Championship. Her most recent fight, a December loss to Jewels champion Ayaka Hamasaki, came as a result of a back injury. Now recovered and back to training, Ham will look to avenge her loss to Kamimura and set up a fight with Kubota for the Rise Queen title later this year.
Rise 88 takes place on June 2nd at TDC Hall in Tokyo, Japan.
(Photo Credit: RISE)