Mei Yamaguchi Determined To Compete In Japan And Claim Title Shot

When ONE Championship makes its debut in Tokyo, Japan with ONE: A NEW ERA on 31 March, Mei “V.V.” Yamaguchi wants a piece of the action.

The iconic Ryogoku Kokugikan will play host to The Home Of Martial Arts for the first time, and as one of the finest women’s athletes to hail from the proud nation, the 35-year-old would be a popular addition to the card.

Yamaguchi has blazed a trail for Japanese women’s mixed martial arts and is a two-time ONE Atomweight World Title challenger, but another opportunity at the belt can wait, for now.

She would be willing to face-off against anyone to compete on home soil.

“I was in the press conference for ONE: A NEW ERA, and I really want to compete on the card,” she says.

“I really want to get the chance to fight.”

Yamaguchi ended her year with a display of complete martial arts dominance as she claimed a landslide unanimous decision victory over Jomary Torres at ONE: DESTINY OF CHAMPIONS.

After delivering a statement of intent with her performance, Yamaguchi has put her cards on the table as she bids to capture gold in the world’s largest martial arts organization.

Yamaguchi’s longtime ONE Championship rival and ONE Atomweight World Champion “Unstoppable” Angela Lee is already booked on the show as she is set to step up to face “The Panda” Xiong Jing Nan in a World Champion versus World Champion bout for the ONE Strawweight World Title.

And while “V.V.’s” desire to face Lee in a third title tilt is well known, she also reveals she harbors similar title aims at strawweight, too.

“The third time is the charm. I definitely want to win the [atomweight] belt,” she explains.

“I want to challenge for the atomweight title again, as well as the strawweight title.”

While Yamaguchi is keen to compete at the Tokyo event regardless, the Japanese star says she would be happy to switch opponent at short notice and to face either World Champion if for any reason one of them had to pull out of their contest.

“I am ready to fight Xiong Jing Nan or Angela Lee – whoever is ready,” she says.

“I want to knock them out with hard punches.”

For Yamaguchi, who will celebrate 12 years as a professional mixed martial artist before ONE: A NEW ERA, the organization’s arrival in the Land Of The Rising Sun will mark a watershed moment for the sport in her country.

She is hoping she will get the opportunity to showcase her abilities on home soil as she looks to prove to the world what she has believed for a long time.

“I can beat anyone,” she declares.