Yosuke Saruta to test Keito Yamakita’s mettle at ONE Fight Night 24

By BJPENN.COM Staff - July 9, 2024

Yosuke Saruta looks to arrest his losing skid when he reports for duty at ONE Fight Night 24 on Prime Video.

Yosuke Saruta

The former ONE Strawweight MMA World World Champion battles Japanese compatriot Keito Yamakita in a three-round duel. This airs live in U.S. primetime from the iconic Lumpinee Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, on August 2.

“The Ninja” has yet to taste victory since he suffered a knockout loss at the hands of reigning divisional kingpin Joshua Pacio in their September 2021 trilogy fight.

To compound his misery, he conceded an upset loss to Gustavo Balart — now ranked #3 in the weight class and fighting Jarred Brooks for the division’s interim strap at ONE Fight Night 24 — on the scorecards seven months later.

A win on the ONE Championship stage remained elusive for Saruta this past February when he bowed to #5-ranked Mansur Malachiev in a lopsided encounter by unanimous decision.

With Pacio sidelined due to an ACL injury and the promotion soon to crown an interim titleholder between Balart and Brooks, Saruta is in a must-win situation if he wants to avoid being lost in the shuffle.

Keito Yamakita aims to sustain momentum at Yosuke Saruta’s expense

Yosuke Saruta shares the ring with a man who has turned heads ever since he made his promotional debut in March 2023.

Keito Yamakita put the entire weight class on notice in his maiden assignment, defeating former ONE Strawweight MMA World Champion Alex Silva via unanimous decision.

Though he hit a rough patch at the hands of #2-ranked Bokang Masunyane last January, “Pocket Monk” immediately rebounded from the dismal performance nearly two months later. 

There, Yamakita made quick work of Jeremy Miado, submitting the Filipino knockout artist with a bulldog choke in the first round.

Taking Saruta out of the equation at ONE Fight Night 24 on Prime Video will certainly be another feather in Yamakita’s cap.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


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