Kubota vs Casimir, Tsumura vs Nakamura 2 Set For Sunday NightJapanese superstar Rena Kubota makes her return to action on Sunday night at Shoot Boxing 2014: Act.1 in Tokyo. The popular three-time Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup Champion is set to face off against American mixed martial arts fighter Katie Klimansky-Casimir under shoot boxing rules.

In other female fights on Sunday’s Shoot Boxing card, Kubota’s protégé, two-time Shoot Boxing JKS48 tournament winner Mio Tsumura, faces Akari “Eneos” Nakamura in a rematch from 2012. Former Shoot Boxing Japan Women’s Flyweight Champion Ai Takahashi takes on Miyumi Takahashi.

Kubota (24-5-1 SB/KB) brings an eight-fight winning streak into her first bout of 2014 on Sunday. The 22-year-old won the prestigious Girls S-Cup tournament title in 2009, 2010 and 2012, and she had a successful run in non-tournament bouts this past year after returning from an injury hiatus. In her most recent fight in December, Kubota stopped late-replacement opponent Yuri Kim in the first round. She now faces Klimansky-Casimir (1-2-0 MMA, 0-0-0 SB), who travels to Japan for her shoot boxing debut. She most recently suffered a TKO loss to Alida Gray in a November MMA bout.

Tsumura (11-1-0 SB) has quickly risen to become one of Shoot Boxing’s top young stars. Under the tutelage of her mentor, Kubota, Tsumura has won back-to-back Shoot Boxing JKS48 high school girls’ tournaments. In August 2012, she defeated Nakamura (7-5-1 SB/KB) by second-round corner stoppage in the JKS48 final, and both fighters have been active since their first meeting. Tsumura defeated two opponents in one night to win the 2013 edition of the JKS48 tournament and most recently outpointed Chihiro Kira in December. Nakamura looks to rebound from a pair of tough defeats in November.

Former SB champ Ai Takahashi (18-5-0 SB/KB) tries for her second straight win when she takes on Miyumi Takahashi (1-3-0 SB/KB) in a 55-kilogram matchup. Ai rebounded from her third loss to teen prodigy Mizuki Inoue in the finals of the 2013 Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup 53.5kg tournament by defeating veteran MMA fighter and kickboxer Miyo Yoshida in mid-November. Miyumi fought three times in 2013 and most recently suffered a Unanimous Decision loss on November 24th.

Shoot Boxing 2014: Act.1 takes place this Sunday, February 23rd, at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan.



(Photo Credit: Shoot Boxing)