One Championship announced that Yoshihiro Akiyama and Nieky Holzken will be joining its ONE 165 lineup on January 28 at Ariake Arena in Tokyo. The fight will be under special rules, with the two competing in boxing, Muay Thai, and MMA in each round of the bout.

The fight is part of the historic return of the promotion in Japan, with ONE deciding to feature a bunch of Japanese fighters for the event, including Takeru Segawa, Shinya Aoki, and more. One new addition is Akiyama, who will face Holzken in a 187.25-pound catchweight bout.

It will be an interesting fight given the promotion has decided to have under special rules consisting of three sports. However, Akiyama might find it a challenging match, especially after segments of long hiatus in the sports world. Despite making a win under the ONE banner in his last two fights versus Aoki and Sherif Mohamed, those fights were held in 2022 and 2020, respectively. The Japanese/Korean fighter also fought under the UFC, but his record wrapped up with a 2-5 figure. On a positive note, the fighter worked previously under K-1 and has experience in karate, boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, and submission grappling.

Meanwhile, “The Natural,” despite losing to Arian Sadikovic and Sinsamut Klinmee, has vast experience in the combat sports industry, thanks to his time doing kickboxing and under K-1 and GLORY. Additionally, aside from being eight years younger than the opponent, Holzken also has sufficient experience in boxing, kickboxing, and Muay Thai. What makes his record more appealing than Akiyama’s, nonetheless, is his 50 knockouts in kickboxing and 11 in the boxing ring.

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