The first four fights for Rizin 23 have been released. The event is set for Yokohoma on August 10th and will be headlined by a bantamweight title fight between Kai Asakura and Hiromasa Ogikubo.

Asakura (14-2) is coming off a second round stoppage loss at the hands of Manel Kape in a title bout at Rizin 20. He had previously beaten reigning champion Kyoji Horiguchi but the belt was not on the line.

However Kape would subsequently leave the promotion without defending the title in order to sign with the UFC. As a result the belt is now vacant and Askura has finally been handed a shot at it.

His opponent is Ogikubo (20-4-2). The 33 year old is riding a three fight winning streak that included split decision wins at both Rizin 17 and Rizin 20.

The two fighters were rumoured to be facing off on April 19th. That was the original date for Rizin 22 but the event was postponed due to the coronavirus, or Covid-19, pandemic.

The card will also feature an all Japanese bantamweight bout. Former Deep 125lbs and 135lbs champion Yuki Motoya (24-8) has been matched with Shooto veteran Mamoru Uoi (22-8-5).

In a catchweight contest set for 59kgs Yutaka Saito (17-4-2) goes up against Kazumasa Majima (14-1). The fourth fight on the card is in the featherweight division and pits Seiichiro Ito (12-3-2) against Makoto Takahashi (10-1-1).

The event will take place at the brand new Pia Arena in Yokohama. The 10,000 capacity arena only opened this year but there will be a limit of 5,000 fans.

Rizin 22 is set for the same venue on the previous day.

Rizin 23, Yokohama, August 10th
Hiromasa Ougikubo vs. Kai Asakura (For Bantamweight Title)
Yuki Motoya vs. Mamoru Uoi (Bantamweight)
Yutaka Saito vs. Kazumasa Majima (Catchweight)
Seiichiro Ito vs. Makoto Takahashi (Featherweight)