Kyoji Horiguchi will be back in action on a Bellator 295 card that is stacked with Japanese fighters. He is facing fellow UFC veteran Ray Borg in Honolulu on April 22nd.
Horiguchi (31-5) is fresh off his win over Hiromasa Ougikubo. That was his first fight at 125lbs since leaving the UFC in 2016.
Horiguchi would go on to capture the Rizin and Bellator bantamweight belts but has lost his last two fights for the American promotion. He went on to win two for Rizin and will be looking to make it three in a row.
Borg (16-5) has won three out of three since leaving the UFC. He tasted victory at UAE Warriors 20 but his follow up fight for the Abu Dhabi based promotion was cancelled when he contracted Covid-19.
A strong finish to round 1 for team @BellatorMMA's Kyoji Horiguchi…
— RIZIN FF English (@rizin_English) December 31, 2022
Rizin veteran Kana Watanabe will also be on that card. She has been matched with former Bellator flyweight champion Ilima-Lei Macfarlane.
Watanabe (11-1-1) has only ever lost one fight. She will be looking to establish herself as the #1 contender in the division with a win over the popular Hawaiian.
Macfarlane (12-2) has lost two out of her last three fights and missed weight for the most recent. The 32 year old will be desperate for a win in her homeland here.
View this post on Instagram
Baptism of fire
Masayuki Kikuiri makes his Bellator debut against Alexey Shurkevich. It looks to be a baptism of fire for the reigning interim welterweight King of Pancrase.
Kikuiri (8-2-1) won the title at Pancrase 324 with a hard fought decision win over the experienced Akihiro Murayama. He elected to sign for Bellator instead of looking to become the undisputed champion.
Shurkevich (13-5) has been facing some very experienced opponent in Russia and won with a first round stoppage on his Bellator debut. The sambo specialist was knocked out by a spinning back fist in his last fight and will be looking to fare much better here.