Just a couple of weeks after Newark pro kickboxer Bailey Sugden successfully defended his 63.5kg ISKA World Title under K-1 rules in Grantham, which he originally won there in March 2022, The British Bulldog received the news he had been hoping for when he was invited to Tokyo for a press conference during which it was revealed that he will be fighting the legendary Takeru Segawa, the only three weight World Grand Prix Champion in K-1 history, in France this summer…
Takeru’s first ever fight in Europe, the five-round contest at 61kg for the double Lightweight MTGP and ISKA World Titles takes place on Saturday 24 June at the Zenith Arena in Paris in front of an audience of 8,000 fight fans and will also be broadcast live worldwide.
In an interview after the press conference, which was streamed live on Wednesday 29 March, Bailey said: “I really enjoyed my short visit to Japan where I was treated very well and it was incredible to learn that I will back on the world stage where I belong in just a few months’ time.
“Both my opponent and I have really exciting styles so this is going to be an awesome fight. It will change my own life and that of my family – all of our hard work has been for this moment and now it’s my time to show the whole world who its best kickboxer is.”
“I’m so proud and excited about this opportunity for Bailey and I definitely believe he can win this contest and those two titles,” said his manager and father Dean Sugden.
“With a professional record that includes 16 wins, three by TKO, at just 25 years old he has already fought at the highest level all over the world, including on GLORY in Madison Square Garden, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston, Chicago and Rotterdam, as well as in Czechoslovakia and of course closer to home at Grantham Meres Leisure Centre last month when he successfully defended his ISKA 63.5kg World Title.
“He is now a more complete fighter with more rounded skills and I believe he has both the physicality and the skills to defeat Takeru. And a win in Paris in June would mean a return to Japan, this time not just for a press conference but to fight.
“We would be delighted to give Takeru, whose professional record stands at 41 wins, 24 by KO or TKO, and just three losses and whose last contest at Tokyo Dome attracted 60,00 spectators and earned him $2.5m, first crack at a rematch in Japan where, as defending champion, Bailey would himself be in a life-changing fight in terms of money.
“But if Takeru wants to rest, we will fight Tenshin Nashukawa, the Japanese fighter who was Takeru’s last opponent and previously fought Floyd Mayweather Jr under Boxing rules.
“Tickets for the fight in Paris are now available online here, priced VIP 245€, Around Ring 95€ and Grandstand 65€, 45€ and 35€, but they’re sure to sell fast so if you’re able to join us there make sure you get your booking in as soon as possible.
“And don’t forget to look out for information on PPV streaming coming soon both on our websites and on social media.”