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Kiyoshi Tamura
Born (1969-12-17) December 17, 1969 (age 45)
Okayama, Okayama, Japan[1]
Other names Koko no Tensai ("The Aloof Genius"), Pride Kara no Shikaku ("Pride Assassin")
Nationality Japanese
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 90 kg (200 lb)
Division 205
Style Shoot Wrestling
Team U-File Camp
Teacher(s) Nobuhiko Takada
Akira Maeda
Billy Robinson
Mixed martial arts record
Total 48
Wins 32
By knockout 5
By submission 13
By decision 8
Unknown 6
Losses 13
By knockout 4
By submission 3
By decision 4
Unknown 2
Draws 3
Other information
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Kiyoshi Tamura (田村潔司 Tamura Kiyoshi?, born December 17, 1969 in Okayama, Okayama) is a Japanese middleweight professional wrestler and mixed martial artist.

Once a student of legendary pro wrestlers Billy Robinson, Nobuhiko Takada and Akira Maeda, Tamura is known for his skill in catch wrestling as well as his ability to deliver exciting and realistic professional wrestling bouts.

He has competed in some form or another for the following organizations: Universal Wrestling Federation, UWF International, Fighting Network RINGS, K-1, PRIDE, and U-STYLE, his own promotion, often fighting much larger opponents.

Professional wrestling[edit]

He debuted in 1989 in the old Japanese UWF against Minoru Suzuki, but made his mark when he later joined its main successor group, UWFI. Tamura was spunky and could even demand respect from older veterans, as demonstrated during a bout against Yoji Anjo where Tamura broke a hold and delivered several kicks to Anjo's head and kicked him out of the ring.

Despite many pundits (such as Pro Wrestling Illustrated) comparing him to UWFI champion Nobuhiko Takada, Tamura never challenged for the title. As the interpromotional feud against New Japan Pro Wrestling started, Tamura jumped to RINGS, founded by old mentor Maeda. He was briefly pushed as the top star, being given the first (worked) RINGS heavyweight title, but as RINGS transitioned to real MMA bouts, his star began to flicker, as he struggled to keep pace despite winning bouts.

In 2003 he opened his own promotion, U-STYLE. On November 23, 2005 he had his last match for this promotion, defeating Josh Barnett. He briefly came out of retirement for Antonio Inoki's Inoki Genome Federation, the last time being on November 8, 2007, beating Montanha Silva in the latter's IGF debut.

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Tamura's 30 career wins[2] include victories over mixed martial arts greats such as Jeremy Horn, Renzo Gracie, Ikuhisa Minowa, Nobuhiko Takada, Pat Miletich[1] and held Frank Shamrock to a draw at a time when Shamrock was reigning UFC champion.

However, in spite of his many accomplishments inside the arena of MMA, his record is somewhat marred by a proponderance of match-ups against top heavyweight and light-heavyweight competitors, including Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira, the 350-pound Bob Sapp and the former Olympic gold medalist Hidehiko Yoshida amongst others. His later mixed martial arts performances have also been criticized as being relatively apathetic compared to the fast-paced bouts that characterized the earlier part of his career. Part of this may owe to an absence of grappling in the bouts in question, where Tamura has often seemed more content to pursue a cautious stand-up game rather than engage in the submission exchanges he was at one point famed for.

For several years, efforts have been made by Pride Fighting Championships to put Kiyoshi Tamura and fellow UWFi alum and mixed martial artist Kazushi Sakuraba together in a fight due to their status as two of the best Japanese fighters of their time as well as a rumored rivalry. An announcement was made at Pride 34 by Nobuyuki Sakakibara that promised the fans a future fight between the two. However, Pride ceased being an active promotion after that event.

Finally it was announced that Kiyoshi Tamura and Kazushi Sakuraba were set to fight at the K-1 Fields Dynamite!! event on December 31, 2008. The fight was characterized by Tamura generally countering take-down and submission attempts by Sakuraba while applying ground-and-pound from the top position throughout the bout. At the end of the first round, Sakuraba appeared to have an armbar locked in, but Tamura held on and in the second controlled much of the action until being taken down by Sakuraba in the final minute. Ultimately, Tamura was awarded a unanimous decision, to finally beat Sakuraba.

Personal life[edit]

On July 7, 2007, Tamura married tarento and pro wrestling host Yumiko Sakurai.

In wrestling[edit]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed Martial Arts[edit]

Pro Wrestling[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 32-13-3 Kazushi Sakuraba Decision (unanimous) Fields Dynamite!! 2008 December 31, 2008 2 5:00 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Win 31-13-3 Masakatsu Funaki TKO (punches) Dream 2: Middleweight Grand Prix 2008 First Round April 29, 2008 1 0:57 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Win 30-13-3 Hideo Tokoro Submission (armlock) K-1 Premium 2007 Dynamite!! December 31, 2007 3 3:08 Osaka, Japan
Loss 29-13-3 Taiei Kin Decision (unanimous) Hero's 9 July 16, 2007 2 5:00 Yokohama, Japan
Win 29-12-3 Ikuhisa Minowa KO (soccer kicks) Pride FC - Shockwave 2006 December 31, 2006 1 1:18 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Loss 28-12-3 Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira Submission (armbar) Pride 31 - Dreamers February 26, 2006 1 2:24 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Win 28-11-3 Makoto Takimoto Decision (unanimous) PRIDE Critical Countdown 2005 June 26, 2005 3 5:00 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Win 27-11-3 Aliev Makhmud TKO (retirement) PRIDE 29 February 20, 2005 1 7:09 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Win 26-11-3 Rony Sefo Submission (armbar) PRIDE Shockwave 2003 December 31, 2003 1 2:20 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Loss 25-11-3 Hidehiko Yoshida Submission (ezekiel choke) PRIDE Total Elimination 2003 August 10, 2003 1 5:06 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Win 25-10-3 Nobuhiko Takada KO (punch) PRIDE 23 November 24, 2002 2 1:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 24-10-3 Ikuhisa Minowa Decision (unanimous) Deep - 6th Impact September 7, 2002 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 23-10-3 Bob Sapp TKO (punches) PRIDE 21 June 23, 2002 1 0:11 Saitama, Saitama, Japan
Loss 23-9-3 Wanderlei Silva KO (punch) PRIDE 19 February 24, 2002 2 2:28 Saitama, Saitama, Japan For Pride Middleweight Championship
Loss 23-8-3 Gustavo Machado Decision (unanimous) Rings: World Title Series 1 April 20, 2001 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 23-7-3 Renato Sobral Decision (majority) Rings: King of Kings 2000 Final February 24, 2001 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 23-6-3 Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira Submission (armbar) Rings: King of Kings 2000 Block A October 9, 2000 2 2:29 Tokyo, Japan
Win 23-5-3 Zaza Tkeshelashvili Decision (unanimous) Rings: King of Kings 2000 Block A October 9, 2000 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 22-5-3 Pat Miletich Decision (majority) Rings: Millennium Combine 3 August 23, 2000 2 5:00 Osaka, Japan
Win 21-5-3 Jeremy Horn Decision (unanimous) C2K - Colosseum 2000 May 26, 2000 2 5:00 Japan
Loss 20-5-3 Gilbert Yvel TKO (strikes) Rings: Millennium Combine 1 April 20, 2000 1 13:13 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 20-4-3 Renato Sobral Decision (majority) Rings: King of Kings 1999 Final February 26, 2000 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 20-3-3 Renzo Gracie Decision (unanimous) Rings: King of Kings 1999 Final February 26, 2000 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 19-3-3 Borislav Jeliazkov Submission (rear naked choke) Rings: King of Kings 1999 Block B December 22, 1999 2 1:17 Osaka, Japan
Win 18-3-3 Dave Menne Decision (unanimous) Rings: King of Kings 1999 Block B December 22, 1999 2 5:00 Osaka, Japan
Win 17-3-3 Joop Kasteel Submission (arm bar) Rings: Rise 5th August 19, 1999 2 2:17 Japan
Draw 16-3-3 Yoshihisa Yamamoto Draw Rings: Rise 4th June 24, 1999 3 5:00 Japan
Win 16-3-2 Tariel Bitsadze Submission Rings: Rise 3rd May 22, 1999 1 9:19 Japan
Draw 15-3-2 Frank Shamrock Draw Rings: Rise 2nd April 23, 1999 1 20:00 Japan
Win 15-3-1 Hiromitsu Kanehara Submission (arm bar) Rings: Rise 1st March 20, 1999 3 0:14 Japan
Win 14-3-1 Valentijn Overeem Submission (arm bar) Rings: Final Capture February 21, 1999 1 6:08 Japan
Win 13-3-1 Kenichi Yamamoto TKO Rings: World Mega Battle Tournament December 23, 1998 2 1:26 Japan
Draw 12-3-1 Tsuyoshi Kohsaka Draw Rings: Fourth Fighting Integration June 27, 1998 1 30:00 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 12-3 Tariel Bitsadze TKO Rings: Third Fighting Integration May 29, 1998 1 3:39 Tokyo, Japan
Win 12-2 Mikhail Ilyukhin KO Rings: Battle Dimensions Tournament 1997 Final January 21, 1998
Win 11-2 Akira Maeda KO Rings: Battle Dimensions Tournament 1997 Final January 21, 1998
Win 10-2 Joop Kasteel KO Rings: Battle Dimensions Tournament 1997 Final January 21, 1998
Win 9-2 Hans Nijman Submission (arm lock) Rings - Mega Battle Tournament 1997 Semifinal 1 October 25, 1997 1 10:34 Japan
Win 8-2 Volk Han Decision Rings - Extension Fighting 7 September 26, 1997 1 12:48 Japan
Win 7-2 Tsuyoshi Kohsaka Submission (toe hold) Rings - Extension Fighting 2 April 22, 1997 1 13:57 Japan
Win 6-2 Andre Mannaart Submission (rear naked choke) Rings Holland - The Final Challenge February 2, 1997 1 2:11 Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands
Loss 5-2 Volk Han TKO Rings - Budokan Hall 1997 January 22, 1997 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 5-1 Volk Han KO Rings - Battle Dimensions Tournament 1996 Final January 1, 1997
Win 5-0 Yoshihisa Yamamoto KO Rings - Battle Dimensions Tournament 1996 Final January 1, 1997
Win 4-0 Mitsuya Nagai KO Rings - Battle Dimensions Tournament 1996 Final January 1, 1997
Win 3-0 Mikhail Ilyukhin KO Rings - Battle Dimensions Tournament 1996 Opening Round October 25, 1996
Win 2-0 Maurice Smith Submission (armbar) Rings - Maelstrom 6 August 24, 1996 1 10:58
Win 1-0 Patrick Smith Submission (heel hook) K-1 Hercules December 9, 1995 1 0:55 Japan

Mixed rules[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 1–0 Matthew Saad Muhammad Submission (rear naked choke) UWF-i Combat Sport Yokohama May 8, 1992 1 0:38 Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan

Submission grappling record[edit]

Result Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Notes
Loss Brazil Ricardo Liborio Points ADCC 2001 -88 kg 2001


External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kiyoshi_Tamura — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

87 news items

Combat Press

Combat Press
Sun, 20 Sep 2015 10:04:43 -0700

The first-round stoppage was followed by another submission finish eight months later, when Nogueira landed a first-round armbar that forced former professional wrestler Kiyoshi Tamura to tap out just over two minutes into their bout. The heavyweight ...
MMA Fighting
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 10:01:59 -0700

Nogueira who weighed 230 pounds, was at the time the Pride heavyweight champion. Sapp had less than three minutes of in-ring MMA experience in winning two fights against pro wrestlers Yoshihisa Yamamoto and Kiyoshi Tamura, the latter of which fought ...
MMA Fighting
Mon, 06 Apr 2015 09:06:45 -0700

Sapp (11-18) had an impressive start in MMA in 2002, earning a shot at PRIDE heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira after back-to-back TKO wins over Kiyoshi Tamura and Yoshihisa Yamamoto in PRIDE. "The Beast", who lost to "Minotauro" in ...
Wed, 05 Aug 2015 11:59:34 -0700

During the UFC 190 post-fight press conference, Ultimate Fighting Championship President Dana White told the media that he didn't want to see Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira compete in the Octagon any longer and issued an invitation to work with the promotion ...


Sun, 30 Aug 2015 21:09:34 -0700

The most promoted match was the retirement fight of Nobuhiko Takada, the star that kept Pride afloat in its early years, versus Kiyoshi Tamura. The match drew on nostalgia, as Takada was the top star of the UWFI, a shoot-style pro wrestling promotion ...


Mon, 12 Jan 2015 06:48:03 -0800

FACT 5: Former Dream champion Marius Zaromskis in 2010 became the third man to defeat Japanese legend Kazushi Sakuraba on New Year's Eve, joining Kiyoshi Tamura and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira. FACT 6: John Salter has never gone the distance in ...


Tue, 23 Dec 2014 06:46:31 -0800

The concern the UFC has in promoting “CM Punk” in a primetime PPV fight is that his performance could end up looking as ugly as Nobuhiko Takada's against Rickson Gracie; or the way Yuji Nagata looked against Mirko Filipovic; or the way Kiyoshi Tamura ...
MMA Fighting
Sun, 09 Nov 2014 16:03:11 -0800

They were among the regular stars for the group which also included a number of fighters who later transitioned into MMA like Kiyoshi Tamura, Tsuyoshi Kosaka and Volk Han, and was also the organization that legendary Olympic Greco-Roman wrestler ...

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