MMA

Who is Floyd Mayweather Jr’s opponent Tenshin Nasukawa?

Who is Floyd Mayweather Jr’s opponent Tenshin Nasukawa?

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AFP

Floyd Mayweather will face Japanese kickboxing rising star Tenshin Nasukawa, as the North American will make his first tryout at the MMA.

The latest move in the controversial career of the American boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr will see him head to Japan on 31 December to take on the Japanese featherweight kickboxing champion Tenshin Nasukawa.

Despite being almost an unknown in the west, Nasukawa is making big noise in Asia as he straddles three disciplines with great success - full contact karate, kickboxing and mixed martial arts (MMA) - landing some noteworthy victories early in his career.

With the rules of the encounter not yet defined, the Japanese is an ideal candidate to take on Mayweather in a whole range of disciplines.

Why fight Nasukawa?

The 20-year-old Nasukawa has already been punctuated by some notable wins, defeating the veteran Muay Thai champion Wanchalong PK Saenchaigym with a first-round knockout at the age of 18, chosen as the 2016 knockout of the year by Combat Press.

As an amateur, the Japanese amassed a record of 99-5 before turning professional in kickboxing.

He is the current RISE featherweight World champion; also, he is ranked the #8 bantamweight in the world by Combat Press.

Mayweather’s 50-0 boxing career will not be the only unbeaten record on the line on New Year’s Eve, as the Japanese holds a 27-0 in kickboxing and 4-0 in MMA.

Perhaps, Mayweather’s main motivation to fight Nasukawa is to expand his brand into Asia.

“I have fought in the US for all 50 of my fights,” the North American said. “As a professional, I haven’t had a chance to go outside the US to display my skills and to display my talent for the world.”

Mayweather defeated Connor McGregor in the ring last year and now he has been holding talks about a potential fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov.

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