Saori Oshima, Seika Izawa Capture Titles At Deep Jewels 33Rising star Saori Oshima added a second championship to her collection today at Deep Jewels 33 in Tokyo, Japan. The reigning Deep Women’s Microweight Champion defeated Hikaru Aono in today’s entertaining main event to capture the vacant Deep Jewels Atomweight Championship.

In the co-main event, Seika Izawa kept her unblemished record intact and captured her first major MMA title by defeating Miki Motono for a second time. Izawa, who outpointed Motono in a December non-title bout, quickly submitted her tonight to become Deep Jewels Strawweight Champion.


Oshima (6-2-0) fought off one takedown attempt from the veteran Aono (8-5-0) early in the championship headliner, but Aono landed punches to Oshima’s face and then got her down to the mat seconds later. Oshima defended with a leglock attempt and a guillotine choke, which allowed her to sweep into top position. Aono eventually escaped from the choke, but Oshima stayed on top and fought off an Aono heel hook attempt late in the round.

Round two opened with another takedown from Aono, who maintained top position until Oshima used a kimura to sweep. She landed punches to Aono’s face from side control and continued to rain down blows as Aono tried to regain half-guard. Oshima moved to side control again in the late stages of the round and she landed more punches to Aono’s head until the end of the fight. Oshima’s dominant second round left no doubt in the judges’ minds.

Judges Uematsu, Nagase, Tazawa and Matsumiya scored the fight 20-18, while judge Toyonaga had it 20-17. All were in favour of Oshima, who took the well-deserved Unanimous Decision win and became Deep Jewels Atomweight Champion in the process.


Both Oshima and Aono had to fight their way into the atomweight grand prix final by winning their respective bouts earlier on the card. Oshima rebounded from a knockdown in her semi-final matchup against Si Woo Park (5-3-0) and finished the South Korean with an armbar. The technical submission stoppage came at the 2:28 mark of round one and allowed Oshima to avenge her prior loss to Park at Deep Jewels 31. Aono, meanwhile, made short work of Mizuki “Nisse” Oshiro (2-4-0) in their semi-final bout. Oshiro, who entered the fight in place of an ill Aya Murakami, succumbed to an Aono armbar during a transition early in the fight. The technical submission came at the 1:39 mark of round one.

“I could not have imagined winning this tournament because my [quarterfinal] opponent was Emi Tomimatsu and I had already lost my last fight against Park,” Oshima stated backstage following her title victory. “I adopted a challenger’s mindset this time, and Park’s defensive grappling was good, so I had to work hard to finish her but I took almost no damage in the fight. I didn’t do much research on Aono because I was so focused on facing Park. I trained hard in grappling, and I thought I could get a finish, but couldn’t manage it in the final.

“I train with Ayaka [Hamasaki], so I know it won’t be easy fighting on a bigger stage, but if I get the call then I will fight,” Oshima added when asked about the possibility of competing for a promotion like Rizin. “I didn’t get knocked down tonight. I intentionally went down in order to be able to grapple.”


Competing in just her third pro MMA bout, Izawa (3-0-0) showed that she is already one of the most talented competitors on the Deep Jewels roster by submitting Motono (5-3-0) in the first round of their title rematch today. Izawa set up an early takedown with a body kick and she passed to side control on the ground. Motono battled back to her feet once, but Izawa met her with knees to the body and secured another takedown soon after. From side control, Izawa transitioned to an armbar that forced Motono to tap out and relinquish her title at the 3:32 mark of round one.

“I’m glad because last time we went to a decision and today I was determined to get a finish,” Izawa said backstage. “I changed up the training at my gym so that I could fight more tactically. I used low kicks to set up my takedown and then to the armbar. I regret that my brothers were defeated [at Deep: Tokyo Impact] yesterday, but they were in my corner and that empowered me. I can fight because of Deep Jewels and I am thankful for that. I want to prove that Deep Jewels is the best in the world.”


In other action on the card, Yukari Nabe (10-3-1) took a well-earned Unanimous Decision victory over Mika “Arami” Arai (5-6-0) at flyweight. Nabe fought off Arai’s clinch attempts in the opening round by repeatedly tossing her to the mat with harai goshi throws. After trading takedowns in round two, Nabe countered a guillotine choke from Arai by pinning her against the cage and then slamming her down to the mat. She maintained top position throughout the remainder of the round and avoided Arai’s leg submission attempts from the bottom late in the fight. Scores were 20-18 across the board for Nabe, who has won seven straight fights.

Namiko “Hime” Kawabata (2-0-0) cruised to a Unanimous Decision win over Shoko Fujita (1-1-0), thanks in part to a point deduction that Fujita incurred due to missing the strawweight limit. Kawabata landed leg and body kicks in the opening minute and Fujita responded by taking her down into side control. She landed numerous hammerfists, but Kawabata fought back to her feet and jumped on Fujita’s back in search of a rear-naked choke. In round two, the figters traded kicks and Kawabata established her superior boxing by landing jabs and straight rights at will. She scored a takedown in the late stages of the round and landed ground and pound from the top to seal the victory in her favour. Scores were 20-17 thrice for Kawabata, who remains unbeaten.

Teen prospect Eru Takebayashi (1-0-0, 1 NC) picked up her first pro victory in a 51kg matchup against the much more experienced Otoha Nagao (4-4-0). Takebayashi took the fight to the mat early on, but Nagao was active with triangle choke and armbar attempts from the bottom. Takebayashi landed hammerfists from the top to escape and she was able to take Nagao’s back in a standing clinch before the bell. Takebayashi got the better of the striking exchanges in round two with jab-cross combos that forced Nagao to clinch. She tried to throw Takebayashi to the ground, but gave up her back in the process and Takebayashi hunted for a rear-naked choke before closing out the fight with hammerfists. Judges Asamoto and Matsumiya scored the fight 20-18 for Takebayashi, while judge Igarashi had it even at 19-19 with his Must Decision going to Takebayashi for a Unanimous Decision win.

Yuko “Pochan Z” (1-0-0) made the most of her pro debut by stopping Sayaka “Juicy” Hishinuma (0-1-0) with punches in the second round of their lightweight bout. Yuko flurried to the body in a clinch and took Hishinuma down with a harai goshi throw into side control, where she landed punches and hammerfists before mounting Hashinuma in the final minute. In round two, Yuko used another harai goshi to get Hishinuma down into side control. Yuko passed to mount and, after threatening with a top-side guillotine choke, rained down punches and hammerfists for the TKO stoppage at the 1:31 mark of round two.

In a 48kg amateur bout, Asumi Komatsuzaki dominated Sena on the ground for most of round one before finishing her with a second-round scarf hold armlock. Komatsuzaki threw Sena to the ground early in round two and landed in the scarf hold position. She isolated Sena’s arm between her legs and cranked on the scarf hold armlock until referee Takashi Hashimoto intervened for the technical submission stoppage at the 1:09 mark of round two.

Opening up the card, Yuka Okutomi made short work of Sakura “Sakurako” Nimura in a 60kg amateur bout. Okutomi scored a double-leg takedown early in the fight and passed to side control. She locked on a far-side kimura and referee Takashi Hashimoto had seen enough, calling for the technical submission at the 1:27 mark of round one.

Full play-by-play for the Deep Jewels 33 card can be found here.



(Photo Credit: Deep Jewels)

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