It has been a banner month for Bonsai Jiu Jitsu. Japanese based Brazilians Roberto de Souza and Kleber Koike Erbst scored career defining wins at Rizin 28 last week and their teammate will be looking to continue the winning streak on Sunday.

Alan Yamaniha is taking on Kazuma Kuramoto at Rizin 29. His teammates are both coming off big submission wins and he plans to execute the same strategy this Sunday,

“I believe that jiu jitsu is the best martial art. I will defeat him on the ground,” he said.

Alan Yoshihiro Yamaniha 2

Tough life

Like his teammates de Souza and Erbst he was born in Brazil but is based in Japan. Life as a foreigner there is not always easy according to Yamaniha,

“I currently work as a driver and bodyguard to an executive. My life hasn’t been easy, I’ve survived in a foreign country with my friends.”

He dreams of being able to dedicate himself to professional fighting on a full time basis. But for the time being Yamaniha needs to keep the day job in order to make ends meet.

But inspired by the success of his Brazilian teammates Yamaniha is hoping to make the transition from being a part time fighter to focusing full time on his passion,

“I want to become a full time fighter. We are a big family over at Bonsai.”

Alan Yoshihiro Yamaniha punch

Favourite submission

Kuramoto comes from a wrestling background and won over the fans with an explosive performance at Rizin 26. Yamaniha is making his promotional debut and will come into this contest as the underdog.

But he doesn’t have to look too far for inspiration. Neither de Souza nor Erbst were expected to win at Rizin 28 and Yamaniha will be hoping to spring a few surprises of his own in this tournament.

After 29 fights Yamaniha is unlikely to change his style. He has fought so many times for Deep, Pancrase, Heat and various other promotions that opponents know exactly what to expect and the Brazilian is up front about what he plans to do to Kuramoto,

“I like to go for the armbar,” he admitted.

Alan Yoshihiro Yamaniha

Memorable match

That might explain why Yamaniha picked Kuramoto. He was given the choice of opponents and decided he wanted to test his grappling against the Japanese fighter’s wrestling.

Styles make fights and the Brazilian believes that whatever happens this will be a memorable match,

“Everybody in this tournament is very tough but I picked Kuramoto because we can put on a fun fight.”