ALPHA-1 WARRIORS OF THE RING 29.03.1998
ALPHA-1 Middleweight Newcomers’ Tournament Semi-Final
Sebastian Schiller (3-2) vs. Tetsuji Myojin (4-0)
This was certainly a match of mild surprises. Those who predicted the legendary Farang Ba school Muay Thai fighter to knock Myojin’s teeth out in the first round were certainly surprised, as the sambo fighter managed to survive those ten minutes with only one knockdown that he quickly recovered from. It seemed to be a combination of Shiller’s strikes not being as powerful as we are used to them being and of “Rampage” being able to close the distance and constantly threaten with takedowns. On the other hand, those who predicted Schiller to once again lose due to his inexperience in the MMA environment were a bit humbled when he exhibited some good knowledge of takedown defence, stopping every attempt by Myojin in the first round. Still, those mild surprises did not cover the fact that the first round was not as exciting as it could have been hoped.
In round two, Myojin took more powerful counters to the head, but finally managed a judo trip that ended up with Schiller pulling half guard. A failed scramble attempt resulted in Myojin getting the Dutchman in a turtle position and getting some crisp hits before again rolling him onto the ground. “Rampage” did not manage to get a win with some submission attempts, but that round certainly helped him in both the fans’ and the judges’ eyes.
The third round was kind of a snoozer again, with Schiller exhausted and content to let Myojin circle. All takedown or grappling attempts were met with stiff counters that made the round somewhat in Schiller’s favour – which probably contributed to an unanimous decision granting him the win.
Sebastian Schiller (4-2) defeated Tetsuji Myojin (4-1) by unanimous decision and moves on to the Newcomer’s Tournament Final
ALPHA-1 Middleweight Newcomers’ Tournament Semi-Final
Fumiki Ikeda (5-0) vs. Kadonomaro Deguchi (2-0)
This match had more to it than what is immediately visible. It was not only a fight for a chance to become a Ranked fighter (as both finalists of the tournament fulfil the requirement of 2 tournament fights and lose their Newcomer status). It was also a contest between an ultracharismatic pro wrestler with a nice career behind him (Ikeda) and a highly decorated young amateur wrestler (Deguchi) – which is to say, a contest between two philosophies of wrestling.
The match begun with some excitement, as a wonderful takedown by Ikeda was countered by Deguchi spinning out and getting back to his feet, in a feat more resembling junior heavyweight pro wrestlers’ antics than something an amateur fighter would employ. Some inconclusive back-and-forth grappling led to Ikeda slamming his opponent to the mat. Again Deguchi managed some defence by forcing Fumiki to separate and stand up, but he failed to defend the following entry and Ikeda managed to slip into side control. Again Deguchi showed some wonderful defence as he managed to slip out of a tight-looking armbar, work in an underhook, scramble and force Ikeda into a turtle position. From there a short and nasty comeback began, as Deguchi got Ike into a crucifix position and proceeded to destroy him with hammer fists until TKO was called amidst loud cheers from the crowd.
Kadonomaro Deguchi (3-0) defeated Fumiki Ikeda (5-1) by TKO (strikes) in 6:49 of round 1 and moves on to the Newcomer’s Tournament Final
ALPHA-1 Middleweight Newcomers’ Tournament Final
Kadonomaro Deguchi (3-0) vs. Sebastian Schiller (4-2)
Many speculated that Schiller would not be able to fight a second match after gassing so much in the previous one. Indeed, while he managed to open up with some fast, crisp and dangerous looking striking, most of his shots failed to find their target, and finally Deguchi managed to catch a kick and get a takedown. A scramble attempt turned out to be too slow, and Deguchi managed to find an armbar from side control that finished the match.
Deguchi’s performance was dominating enough that he was ranked in Tier II; meanwhile, Schiller was judged as a huge disappointment (with his win being a dragged-out decision, and his loss a one-sided match) and was for now placed at the bottom of Tier III, a shame for such a legendary fighter.
Kadonomaro Deguchi (4-0, II 3rd) defeated Sebastian Schiller (4-3, III 5th) by submission (armbar) in 4:35 of round 1 to win the Middleweight Newcomers’ Tournament
ALPHA-1 Heavyweight Contendership Match
Mason Archer (15-3, I 4th) vs. Armen Sarkisian (22-2, I 3rd)
The most eagerly awaited match of the night, with Archer, one of the most powerful kickers in the world, facing Sarkisian, one of the strongest and most dominant wrestlers in the world, opened up quite fast, with Sarkisian taking Archer to the ground 90 seconds in and forcing his way into side control. Archer defended bravely, first against an armbar then after giving up his back against a choke, but Sarkisian finally managed to get through his defences and apply a RNC that led to a submission and a decent finish to the match.
While Sarkisian’s rank did not change, Archer was judged lacking and put in Tier II, and after such a one-sided match it is no surprise at all.
Armen Sarkisian (23-2, I 3rd) defeated Mason Archer (15-4, II 2nd) by submission (rear naked choke) in 5:51 of round 1 to become ALPHA-1 Heavyweight Contender
While the commercial appeal of the show was apparently merely decent (the tournament contained only one really popular name, and the main event was quite one-sided), MMA experts considered it a good show, and it seems to be a day a new star of Middleweight division was born.
4,250 for a gate of $425,000
Fight Of The Night:
Kadonomaro Deguchi vs. Fumiki Ikeda
KO Of The Night:
Kadonomaro Deguchi (vs. Fumiki Ikeda)
Submission Of The Night:
Armen Sarkisian (vs. Mason Archer)