SHOOTO - 04/21/2013: What's Next for Pacific Rim Champ "Uruka"?

Written by: Shu Hirata
2013-05-16

Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki's goals for coming down to 135 lbs is simple. Win Shooto's title by defeating Kyoji Horiguchi and score an UFC offer.Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki's goals for coming down to 135 lbs is simple. Win Shooto's title by defeating Kyoji Horiguchi and score an UFC offer."I am not good yet. I am weak."

That was the first word out of Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki after a three-round majority decision win over Kota Onojima.

In Shooto's ranking, Onojima ranks lower than Sasaki. In fact, for a current pacific rim champion, the only man that ranks above him is Shooto's current world champion at 132 lbs, Kyoji Horiguchi.

"I wanted to win this fight in a clean manner and ask for a fight against Kyoji but this is not good."

Obviously Sasaki felt he had to win this fight with either KO or submission to get a shot at Horiguchi's title.

In this fight, Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki (left) was bit too cautious and insisted too much on takedowns. That is the reason why all three judges gave to Kota Onojima for the first round.In this fight, Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki (left) was bit too cautious and insisted too much on takedowns. That is the reason why all three judges gave to Kota Onojima for the first round."Next fight, I am going to finish the opponent, then, I would like to ask. (for a title fight against Horiguchi)".

And "Uruka" said, "I want to fight in VTJ. In the past when I fought Guy (Delumeau) I felt he was strong. So, I want to fight a fighter from overseas."

However, according to the source close to VTJ, the promoters apparently felt the same as Sasaki. Meaning, they were not impressed with his performance against Onojima so they may not even give Sasaki a fight in the next VTJ show in June.

Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki (top) was able to get on a mount position in the final round and landed heavy punches.Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki (top) was able to get on a mount position in the final round and landed heavy punches.If that is the case, then we may see Sasaki go outside Japan.

His record is very impressive at 12-1-2, and he is only 23 years old. He is 5'10", used to fight at 145 lbs but came down to 132 lbs and he is undefeated since then.

With this kind of resume, it won't be a big surprise if more than few promotions outside Japan are interested in Sasaki.

Let's see what's next for him because Sasaki is one of the good looking bantamweights from Japan that may make it to the Octagon.

SHOOTO GIG TOKYO 14
Sunday, April 21st, 2013
At Shinjuku FACE, Tokyo, Japan

Complete Results:

The Main Event - Featherweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Kota Onojima (Japan / Combat Workout Diamonds) vs Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki (Japan / Wajiutsu Keishukai Suruga Dojo)
Winner: 3R Yuta "Uruka" Sasaki by Decision (29-29, 28-29, 28-29)

8th Match - Lightweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Akitoshi Tamura (Japan / Tusdanuma Dojo) vs Yoshifumi Nakamura (Japan / Mach Dojo)
Winner: 3R Yoshifumi Nakamura by Decision (28-29, 28-29, 28-29)

7th Match - Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Nobu Watanabe (Japan / roots) vs "Rambo" Kosuke (Japan / Paraestra Chiba)
Winner: 3R 3'346" "Rambo" Kosuke by Submission (Leg Scissor Coke)

6th Match - Flyweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Yusei Shimokawa (Japan / Dragon Tail) vs Jun Nabeshima (Japan / Wajitsu Keishukai Tokyo Headquarters)
Winner: cancelled - Shimokawa couldn't make the weight

5th Match 65.8 Kg & Under Bout 5 min / 2R
Kazuya Satomoto (Japan / Paraestra Hiroshima) vs Toshiro Chihama (Japan / KRAZY BEE)
Winner: 1R 0'52" Toshiro Jihama by Submission (rear naked choke)

4th Match - Featherweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Keita Ishibashi (Japan / Dur Gym) vs Takafumi Maeda (Japan / Shooting Gym Osaka)
Winner: 1R 4'16" Keita Ishibashi by Submission (rear naked choke)

3rd Match - Flyweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Tomoaki Ohta (Japan / Paraestra Koiwa) vs Takahito "Pinky" Tomozawa (Japan / AACC)
Winner: 2R Draw (20-19, 20-20, 19-19)

2nd Match - Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Yasutaka Ishigami (Japan / Wajiutsu Keishu-kai Tokyo) vs Hayato Sato (Japan / Paraestra Matsudo)
Winner: 2R Draw (19-19, 20-19, 19-20)

1st Match - Welterweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Yuya Onodera (Japan / Saito Kaikan) vs Yoshinori Takahashi (Japan / Mach Dojo)
Winner: 2R Yoshinori Takahashi by Decision (18-20, 18-20, 18-20)


Report by Shu Hirata
Photo courtesy of Bout Review (www.boutreview.com)