After the whole ‘Akiyama getting smoked in the face with a potentially illegal kick‘ thing, we decided to get in touch with our favorite female fighter and American transplant in Japan, Roxy Modafferi. If there was anyone we could trust more than Google to translate the Yarennoka rules, it was her! She was also kind enough to give us a perspective on people’s opinions over there. Check it out:
So…I read the Japanese rules, and it says: When someone is in the four-point position (with both hands and feet touching the ground) soccer ball kicks to the head and face are illegal, but knees aren’t. Then it said something like “BUT in the case of Fedor and (the other guy) it was a foul. (huh?) Then it said “that’s just a hypothetical situation.” (huh?)
Sorry, my Japanese ability can’t comprehend that one, but I don’t think it has anything to do with Akiyama’s fight anyway.
So I talked to one of the guys at my gym, and he thought it was illegal, and he said the president through it was illegal, so that confused me, because wouldn’t that make it ….illegal? I watched the vid on youtube and wasn’t sure if his hands left the ground the moment of the kicks’ impact, but of course, the ref can’t squint at a computer screen and watch frame by frame, right? That pic for the topic of this shows clearly, his hands were on the ground, right? Butthe guy at my gym (who also refs) said that Akiyama was trying to get up, but he’d been knocked down, and it was in the scramble to get up, so maybe that’s why the decision stood?
I’m not sure how to feel about Akiyama. A good pro-fighter friend of mine says, “Of course Akiyama didn’t mean to cheat! He has dry skin and is known for using a lot of lotion, but this time it just happened to be a problem in a match. And that everyone loves Saku so they made a big deal.”
I dunno…I’ve talked to Akiyama (he sometimes trains at Keishukai), but not enough to really know him.