Jewels Lightweight Queen Champion Ayaka Hamasaki will put her title on the line against Emi “Kamikaze Angel” Fujino at Jewels: “22nd Ring” on December 15th in Tokyo, Japan. The three-round title fight was officially announced for the card today along with two additional matchups.
Jewels producer Yasuko Mogi makes her return to action for the first time since April 2010 when she takes on Keiko Tomita. Also confirmed for the December card is a kickboxing match between veteran Mayumi “Super Benkei” Aoki and Satoko Ozawa, who is 2-1 under the Jewels banner.
Hamasaki (8-0-0) became the inaugural Jewels champion in late 2010 by defeating Sakura Nomura and Seo Hee Ham in one night at Jewels: “17th Ring.” She then handed top prospect Mizuki Inoue the lone defeat of her MMA career in September 2011 and later made a successful defence of her Jewels title in a rematch with Ham this past December. In May, Hamasaki faced her most experienced opponent to date, former Smackgirl and Valkyrie champ Yuka “Vale Tudo Queen” Tsuji, and dominated the veteran en route to a first-round submission win. She most recently made a successful North American debut by submitting late replacement opponent Lacey “The Ladie” Schuckman at Invicta FC 2 in July.
Fujino (11-5-0) has been actively competing for close to a decade and she has faced many of MMA’s top female fighters. Fujino began her pro career with eight straight wins, including a notable victory over final Valkyrie champion “V.V” Mei Yamaguchi, before enduring a four-fight losing skid. She has since rallied back with wins in three of her past four fights, with the lone defeat coming against former pound-for-pound queen Megumi “Mega Megu” Fujii in 2010. In her most recent appearance for Jewels, Fujino defeated Mika “Future Princess” Nagano at “18th Ring” in March. She has never been finished in MMA and is coming off of a 44-second knockout victory in a J-Girls kickboxing match earlier this month.
The Hamasaki-Fujino bout will be contested over three five-minute rounds.
Mogi (3-6-0) led the former Valkyrie promotion from its inception in late 2008 until its final event two years later. She made two in-cage appearances, but suffered losses to Misaki Takimoto and Akiko “Betiko” Naito. Following Valkyrie’s collapse, Mogi joined the Jewels staff as an event producer and she has since spearheaded a number of initiatives for the promotion. Next month, she will step back into action for Jewels’ first caged event. Her opponent, Tomita (0-1-0), debuted for Jewels at “19th Ring” in May and suffered a first-round submission loss.
Jewels: “22nd Ring” takes place on December 15th at Differ Ariake in Tokyo, Japan. For the first time in the promotion’s history, the event will be contested inside a cage instead of a ring.
Jewels: “22nd Ring” Fight Card (to date; subject to change):
– Ayaka Hamasaki vs Emi “Kamikaze Angel” Fujino [Jewels Lightweight Queen Championship – 3×5]
– Shizuka Sugiyama vs Roxanne “The Happy Warrior” Modafferi [59kg Jewels Special Rules – 2×5]
– Satomi Takano vs Yasuko “Ikuko” Tamada [46kg Jewels Special Rules – 2×5]
– Mika “Future Princess” Nagano vs Rina Tomita [52kg Jewels Special Rules – 2×5]*
– Yasuko Mogi vs Keiko Tomita [56kg Jewels Special Rules – 2×5]
– Naomi Taniyama vs Mina Kurobe [48kg Jewels Official Rules – 2×5]
– Mayumi “Super Benkei” Aoki vs Satoko Ozawa [60.5kg Kickboxing Rules – 3×3]
– Naoko Omuro vs TBD [Jewels Exhibition MMA Match]**
*Tomita’s retirement bout.
**Omuro’s retirement bout.
(Photo Credit: Jewels blog)