The much talked about first-ever Strikeforce women’s welterweight tournament is all set and ready to go on August 13 at the Dodge Theatre in Phoenix, Arizona. The tournament will include four women and be completed all in one exciting night.
The four women participating in the tournament will be Miesha Tate, Carina Damm, Hitomi Akano and Maiju Kujala. The draw to determine the match-ups will be held during the weigh-ins on Thursday August 12. The tournament will consist of two semi-final bouts to open the night and the winners will come back to fight each other as the night’s co-main event.
Each fight will be three, three-minute rounds and the winner of the tournament will become the official No. 2 welterweight contender. Current welterweight champ Sarah Kaufman faces off against Roxanne Modafferi this Friday and the winner will then take on No. 1 contender Roxanne Modafferi.
Tate (9-2) most recently fought at the Strikeforce Challengers in Fresno, California where she defeated then undefeated Zoila Frausto by armbar in the second round. She is currently riding a three fight win streak and the only loss in her last nine fights was against Kaufman.
Damm (15-3) is a 31-year old student of Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu and older sister of Strikeforce fighter Rodrigo Damm. She is on a very impressive 10 fight winning streak and will be making her Strikeforce debut.
Akano (15-7) is the former Smackgirl middleweight champ and made her Strikeforce debut against the 145 lbs. champ Cris “Cyborg” Santos, who actually weighed in 5.5 lbs over for the fight.
Though she lost the fight, Akano lasted into the third round against the much bigger Santos.
Kujala (4-1) is the least experienced of the four fighters, but does have recent tournament experience in which she won in a similar format. She will have the pressure of making her Strikeforce debut and US debut all at the same time.
Strikeforce Challengers in Arizona will be headlined by Joe Riggs (32-12) against Louis Taylor (6-1) but the showcase of the event is the women’s tournmant.
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