Kazushi "The Gracie Hunter" Sakuraba (22-10-1) will end the year with another fight at K-1’s Premium 2007 Dynamite. Sakuraba will be looking to face the Pancrase veteran Masakatsu Funaki (38-11-0) at the Kyocera Dome in Osaka on December 31st.
Funaki last fought in 2000 against a tough Rickson Gracie who was able to capitalize Funaki via a rear naked choke. It was a big surprise when Funaki announced in July that he would be coming back to fight at the end of 2007. It will be a fight that many Funaki fans will not be missing, especially since he will look to face another of Japan’s all-time MMA favorites-The Gracie Hunter.
Sakuraba recently won at September’s K-1 Hero’s tournament when he defeated Funaki’s student, Katsuyori Shibata, via arm bar in the first round. This next fight doesn’t look to be as easy as his last one. The bout will consist of one 10-minute round followed by a 5-minute 2nd round. If there is still a draw after the first 2 rounds, the match will continue and an additional 5 minutes will be added for a third and final round.