Mizuki Inoue vs Ai Takahashi Set For February 5 SB CardJewels prospect Mizuki Inoue will compete in her third shoot boxing match when she faces current Shoot Boxing Japan Women’s Flyweight Champion Ai Takahashi on February 5th in Tokyo, Japan. The bout was confirmed on Wednesday and will be part of Shoot Boxing 2012: “Road To S-Cup, Act.1.”

Inoue most recently challenged Jewels champion Ayaka Hamasaki in a non-title bout in October, but suffered her first MMA defeat in a competitive bout. She now returns to shoot boxing for the first time since May to face Takahashi, who defeated Rena Kubota for the vacant SB title in June.

Inoue (1-1 SB) has split her time between kickboxing, shoot boxing and mixed martial arts bouts over the past 18 months. The 17-year-old is one of the top female strikers in Japan and she was impressive in her May shoot boxing victory over Natsuka at Jewels: “14th Ring.” However, the bout with Natsuka was contested entirely on the feet and Inoue did not have to contend with the throws that Takahashi has employed in many of her past shoot boxing matches. The youngster’s bout with Takahashi will be her toughest test under shoot boxing rules, but she has shown marked improvement in a short time.

Takahashi (11-2 SB) has competed exclusively under shoot boxing rules, which combine the sport of kickboxing with standing submissions and high-arc throws that award “shoot points.” She advanced to the finals of the 2010 Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup tournament before falling to Rena Kubota. Takahashi earned stoppage wins in two of her next three fights to set up a rematch with Kubota for the vacant SB Japan Women’s Flyweight title on June 5th and she avenged her past loss to Kubota with a Unanimous Decision victory to capture the championship. A bout between Takahashi and 2011 Girls S-Cup winner Erika Kamimura is likely to take place later this year, but Takahashi must first get past Inoue.

Shoot Boxing 2012: “Road To S-Cup, Act.1” takes place on February 5th at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo.



(Photo Credit: Jewels blog)