RIZIN announces fights for first card of 2023 on April 1, including Kouzi vs. Ryusei Ashizawa, Makoto Shinryu vs. Daichi Kitakata


RIZIN is primed to kick off a new year.

On Wednesday, the Japanese promotion announced several fights for its first card of 2023, including the returns of K-1 standout Kouzi and 22-year-old flyweight prospect Makoto Shinryu. RIZIN 41 is set to take place April 1 in Osaka, Japan.

Kouzi will be taking on Ryusei Ashizawa (from RIZIN), in a kickboxing match. Rules for the fight are yet to be established. Kouzi made headlines in 2022, going viral with a knockout of Floyd Mayweather Jr. bodyguard Ray “Jizzy Mack” Sadeghi at a Super Rizin event this past September. He stayed in the spotlight by competing in an exhibition bout against J’Hon Ingram on the Mayweather vs. Deji card in Dubai.

Shinryu (15-1-1) faces a stiff test as he steps into the ring against Daichi Kitakata (20-11-1, 2 NC). In two previous RIZIN appearances, Shinryu scored a decision victory over Hideo Tokoro and a second-round submission of Seiichiro Ito. Also, he has competed in Bellator, DEEP and Pancrase. In his most recent outing this past November, Shinryu captured a vacant Cage Fury Fighting Championships with a fourth-round submission of Diego Paiva.

View more RIZIN 41 announcement bouts here.

Vugar Karamov vs. Yoshinori Horie

Kintaro vs. Koichi Ishizuka

Yusaku Nakamura vs. Mehman Mamedov

Shun vs. Motoki — kickboxing

Shingeki no Yuuki vs. Sota “Cerberus” Kimura — kickboxing

Asataro vs. Shin Sakurai — kickboxing

Source: https://www.mmafighting.com/2023/2/1/23581325/rizin-announces-fights-first-card-2023-april-1-kouzi-ryusei-ashizawa-makoto-shinryu-daichi-kitakata?rand=96749