Features

4 Japanese Stars Who Could Shine When ONE Hits Tokyo

Dec 14, 2018

ONE Championship is already home to the some of Japan’s leading martial arts superstars who have thrilled fans across Asia with their skills and warrior spirit in the cage.

Several ONE World Champions have come from the Land Of The Rising Sun, but they have not been able to showcase their success in front of their compatriots on the global stage for martial arts – until now.

The world’s largest martial arts organization will head to Tokyo for the first time in 2019 for two shows at the famous Ryogoku Kokugikan.

The first event, ONE: A NEW ERA will take place on 31 March, before the ONE cage returns for ONE: GREATNESS UNLEASHED on 12 October. These are four heroes who could get their chance to shine in front of the passionate fans of their home nation.

Shinya Aoki

How will Shinya Aoki's 2019 go?

How will Shinya Aoki's 2019 go?Download the ONE Super App now ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp

Posted by ONE Championship on Monday, December 3, 2018

Former ONE Lightweight World Champion Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki had a phenomenal 2018. The grappling specialist began by defeating Marat “Cobra” Gafurov in a grappling contest, and then racked up three first-round mixed martial arts victories over some of his division’s top contenders.

By anyone’s measure, his finishes of Rasul Yakhyaev, Shannon “OneShin” Wiratchai, and Ev “E.T.” Ting should be enough to earn him a shot at regaining the ONE Lightweight World Title.

No matter the opponent in front of him, “Tobikan Judan” is always exciting, with the ability to dominate and submit elite level adversaries at any point in a contest.

He is one of the country’s most successful martial artists of all time, and is performing at the peak of his powers again. His countrymen will be keen to see him continue his incredible run with their support, especially if a belt is on the line.

Hayato Suzuki

Will Hayato Suzuki beat Joshua Pacio when they rematch on 19 January?

Will Hayato Suzuki beat Joshua Pacio when they rematch on 19 January?Jakarta | 19 January | 6:00PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneglory19

Posted by ONE Championship on Sunday, December 9, 2018

Hayato Suzuki has the biggest battle of his career ahead of him, as he will meet Team Lakay’s Joshua “The Passion” Pacio at ONE: ETERNAL GLORY in Jakarta, Indonesia next month.

ONE Strawweight World Champion Pacio suffered his last defeat at the hands of the Japanese athlete, but went on to register four straight victories to capture the gold.

Suzuki has proved he is one of the organization’s most dangerous grapplers by recording three spectacular rear-naked choke victories in a row to decisively earn a shot at the belt, and a rematch with the Filipino.

If he can capture the belt on 19 January, then he could be set for a grand homecoming in Tokyo. The 32-year-old has already shown he can defeat Pacio, and if he can do it twice, then he will be a massive draw as World Champion in his native land.

Yosuke Saruta

In a technical grappling showcase, Yosuke Saruta outduels Alex Silva to claim a unanimous decision victory!

In a technical grappling showcase, Yosuke Saruta outduels Alex Silva to claim a unanimous decision victory!Watch the full event LIVE & FREE on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast.

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, December 7, 2018

Yosuke “Tobizaru” Saruta announced himself to the ONE strawweight ranks in style when he defeated former World Champion Alex Silva at ONE: DESTINY OF CHAMPIONS this month.

“Tobizaru” showed excellent striking, judo, and ground skills to outwork Silva in Malaysia, and successfully leapfrog the Brazilian in the bustling division’s hierarchy.

The Shooto World Champion is in impeccable form, with just one defeat in his last 10 battles, and he instantly established himself as a top contender through his energetic and well-rounded performance. The strawweight belt has been passed around like a hot potato in the past 12 months, and he will feel like he can gatecrash the World Title picture to take it for himself in 2019.

Whether he competes for gold or squares off against another elite martial artist, Saruta is sure to bring the action if he gets the chance to throw down in the Ryogoku Kokugikan.

Ken Hasegawa

INCREDIBLE warrior spirit displayed by Aung La N Sang & Ken Hasegawa!

INCREDIBLE warrior spirit displayed by Aung La Nsang(Burmese Python) & Ken Hasegawa!Download the ONE Super App now ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp

Posted by ONE Championship on Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Ken Hasegawa only has a single ONE Championship outing to his credit, but it was the most memorable bout in a year of incredible battles for the promotion.

He took on “The Burmese Python” Aung La N Sang in an epic five-round ONE Middleweight World Title battle. He came up short in the final stanza, but he earned the adoration of the fans for his heart and tenacity throughout the contest.

With Hasegawa’s compatriots cheering him on in Tokyo, you can expect even more fireworks and an even more incredible showing.

After pushing his division’s World Champion harder than any other challengers, the 31-year-old warrior will be a popular and deserving recipient of another shot at the middleweight strap if he can put an impressive win or two together. Buoyed by home support, he could do that in Japan.