Riamu Set to Defend Krush Super Bantamweight Title Against Lyra Nagasaka

Oct 02, 2022
Can Riamu rebound with a victory in his first title defense? Photo: K-1 Japan Group
The incumbent Krush Super Bantamweight (-55kg) Champion will make his first title defense against Lyra Nagasaka in the main event of Krush 143, which is set to take place on November 26.

Riamu entered 2022 with a moderate amount of hype behind him. In 2021, he won a clear unanimous decision against the former Krush Bantamweight Champion Begin Yoshioka, before winning two more fights in one day to capture the vacant Krush belt. This improved his overall record to 10 victories in 11 fights and earned him a place in this year's K-1 Super Bantamweight Grand Prix. Riamu would struggle in the quarterfinals, only passing through with a narrow points win, before suffering a technical knockout loss to Akihiro Kaneko in the semifinals. Four months later, Riamu lost a split decision to Mutsuki Ebata, another fighter ranked in Beyond Kick's Super Flyweight (-55kg) top ten. He is currently on a two-fight losing skid and fans are beginning to wonder whether he truly belongs in the divisional elite or if he's a step below the truly great fighters.

Lyra Nagasaka, on the other hand, has enjoyed a career-best run of form. After winning only twice in his first six fights, Nagasaka won his next four fights, with all of his professional victories coming by way of stoppage. He will look to keep both his stoppage and winning streaks going against Riamu and capture his first professional title along the way.

The standout fight on the undercard is the Super Featherweight (-60kg) bout between Yuta Matsuyama and Taiyo Miyakawa. Matsuyama won the K-1 Koshien tournament, Japan's most prestigious amateur competition, at -60 kg in 2020. His stoppage loss to fellow prospect Takumi Terada notwithstanding, Matsuyama's standout amateur career is enough for fans to keep an eye out for him.