Kubota vs Aki, Inoue vs Takahashi 4 Set For SB: Ground Zero TokyoBefore she makes her long-awaited MMA debut, Shoot Boxing Women’s Flyweight Champion Rena Kubota first competes under shoot boxing rules on December 1st at Shoot Boxing: “Ground Zero Tokyo 2015” in Tokyo, Japan. Kubota faces former J-Girls champ Gracyer Aki in a 51kg bout.

Also scheduled for the card is a fourth matchup between two-time Shoot Boxing 53.5kg Girls S-Cup champ Mizuki Inoue and former Shoot Boxing Japan Women’s Flyweight Champion Ai Takahashi. Inoue has won all three of the pair’s meetings, including in the finals of the 2013 Girls S-Cup.

Kubota (31-5-1 SB/KB), one of Shoot Boxing’s biggest stars, is a four-time winner of the prestigious Girls S-Cup tournament. During this year’s Girls S-Cup event, Kubota competed in a non-tournament bout against late replacement Kane Chopirom for the Shoot Boxing Women’s Flyweight Championship. Kubota dominated the fight and finished Chopriom with second-round punches to capture the title. She is set to make her pro MMA debut on New Year’s Eve, but first returns to her shoot boxing roots.

Aki (27-10-2 KB) became the inaugural J-Girls Flyweight Champion in mid-2007 and held the title for more than a year before suffering a five-round decision loss. She regained the belt in July 2009 and once again established herself as one of the top fighters on the J-Girls roster. In recent years, however, Aki has struggled at times and she 5-4 in her past nine bouts. She picked up a Unanimous Decision victory in April and now transitions to shoot boxing in hopes of upsetting Kubota next month.


Inoue (7-1-0 SB) returns to shoot boxing competition for the first time since August 2013, when she earned her third victory over Takahashi in the finals of the 2013 Shoot Boxing 53.5kg Girls S-Cup. The win crowned Inoue as a two-time 53.5kg Girls S-Cup champion. She has since focused her efforts on her MMA career and captured the Deep Jewels Strawweight Championship this past year. She recently halted a two-fight losing skid in MMA by defeating Emi “Kamikaze Angel” Fujino for a third time at Deep Jewels 9, and now plans to make it four-for-four against Takahashi in Tokyo.

Takahashi (25-5-0 SB/KB) has bounced back strong from her third loss to Inoue in 2013. The former Shoot Boxing Japan Women’s Flyweight Champion has won eight straight fights including four wins this year. After earning a Unanimous Decision victory in non-tournament action on this year’s Girls S-Cup card, Takahashi stopped Thai champion Phetchompoo in a one-sided fight at Shoot Boxing 2015: Act.4 in September. With momentum on her side, Takahashi hopes to avenge one of her past losses to Inoue by defeating the 21-year-old star.

Shoot Boxing: “Ground Zero Tokyo 2015” takes place on December 1st at Tokyo Dome City Hall in Tokyo, Japan. Both women’s bouts will be contested over three 3:00 rounds.

Hirofumi Sugi contributed to this report.



(Photo Credit: Shoot Boxing)