The top eight seeds have been announced for Glory 4 Tokyo Heavyweight Grand Slam Tournament on New Year's Eve, with Brazil's Anderson Silva drawing number seven.
Tokyo, Japan (Nov. 15, 2012) - Glory Sports International (GSI) announced today the top eight seeds for the star-studded GLORY 4 TOKYO - Heavyweight Grand Slam, 16-man, single-elimination tournament at Saitama Super Arena on December 31.
Heavyweight champion Semmy Schilt (39-6, 18 KO’s) of Netherlands has been named the No. 1 seed in the tournament draw. Seeds No. 2 through 8 have been assigned to Gokhan Saki (77-15, 53 KO’s) of Turkey, Daniel Ghita (44-7, 34 KO's) of Romania, Remy ‘The Flying Gentleman’ Bonjasky (76-14, 40 KO's) of Netherlands, Peter ‘The Dutch Lumberjack’ Aerts (104-30-1, 78 KO’s) of Netherlands, Errol Zimmerman of Curacao (76-16-1, 41 KO’s), Anderson ‘Braddock’ Silva (32-8-1, 22 KO's) of Brazil and Sergei Kharitonov (22-7 12 KO’s) of Russia, respectively.
A draw that will decide the tournament’s quarterfinal round matchups will take place in Tokyo on Tuesday, Nov. 20 and will stream live, free-of-charge on GloryWorldSeries.com, beginning at 8 p.m. local time/6 a.m. EST/3 a.m. PST.
"The fighters in this tournament are without a doubt the best heavyweights in the world. The top eight seeds alone would make for an amazing tournament but, when you consider that they are just half of the Grand Slam field, you realize that the Dec. 31 event is going to be something very special," said GLORY Managing Director Marcus Luer.
"It is a great pleasure and considerable honor for us to present the top eight seeds to the Japanese fans and fight fans around the world. The complete line-up is the strongest there has ever been for any kickboxing event and it will be by far the most challenging tournament in the history of the sport," observed GLORY Chairman Pierre Andurand.
GLORY determines its tournament seeds using the GLORY World Federation rankings.
Semmy Schilt (No. 1 Seed)
An Ashihara Karate sensei, Schilt faced Zimmerman in Sweden earlier this year in GLORY’s inaugural heavyweight championship bout, and his dominating win underlined his place at the top of the weight category and at the top of the pound-for-pound rankings.
Gokhan Saki (No. 2 Seed)
Saki’s performance against Mourad Bouzidi at GLORY 2 Brussels on Oct. 6 gave all his fellow heavyweights pause for thought. Few of them can match Saki’s speed and power, and his left hand that has ended many a fight.
Daniel Ghita (No. 3 Seed)
Ghita, known as ‘The Savage Samurai,’ is noted for his brutal leg-kicks and technical kickboxing. In 2011 and 2012, he dismantled all the opposition placed in front of him and is now at his absolute prime, touted as a future all-time great.
Remy Bonjasky (No. 4 Seed)
One of the sport’s decorated, all-time greats who has produced some of the most memorable moments in the ring with his high-flying, unorthodox style, Bonjasky recently returned from a long hiatus to take on and beat the very tough Silva in a grueling fight. During the bout, Bonjasky proved that his superior athletic ability and conditioning remains intact and that he still relies on his leaping knees and kicks which have made him such a fan favourite.
Peter Aerts (No. 5 Seed)
For many fans, Aerts is still the face of kickboxing. He has fought in Japan for 20 years and won the K-1 Grand Prix, once the top kickboxing tournament, three times. Aerts has also beaten Schilt three times.
Errol Zimmerman (No. 6 Seed)
Zimmerman came to fight for his shot at the GLORY heavyweight title on May 26 but, like many before him, he couldn’t overcome the dominant Schilt. Since their matchup, Zimmerman has been working hard in the gym and honing his fearsome right hand and, according to insiders, he has some new tricks for whomever he faces in the tournament.
Anderson Silva (No. 7 Seed)
The No. 1 heavyweight kickboxer in Brazil, Silva was invited to Amsterdam to become Aerts’ primary sparring partner for several years. He has faced Bonjasky and fellow top heavyweight Badr Hari in 2012 and impressed fans in both starts. In 41 professional fights, the 26-year-old has never once been knocked out.
Sergei Kharitonov (No. 8 Seed)
Russian bear and former paratrooper Kharitonov knows a thing or two about shock tactics. In keeping with his military training, Kharitonov likes to close the distance, overwhelm defenses and take the enemy out as quickly and completely as possible before returning to base for his next mission.
The card featuring the GLORY 4 Tokyo - Heavyweight Grand Slam tournament represents one half of the ‘GSI presents DREAM 18 and GLORY 4 Tokyo - New Year's Eve Special,’ double-header event at Saitama Super Arena. The action will kick off at 4 p.m. local time with DREAM 18, a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) card stacked with world-class talent to be announced soon.
Tickets for GSI presents DREAM 18 and GLORY 4 Tokyo - New Year's Eve Special, go on sale on Sunday, Nov. 25. Broadcast details for will be announced soon. For more information, visit www.gloryworldseries.com.