Twelve-year-old Japanese girl won MMA debut by choking fighter twice her age

Saturday's amateur MMA bout in Tokyo between Momoko Yamasaki and a fighter identified in promotional materials only as “Momo” was hardly in doubt, with Momo taking Yamasaki's back in the first seconds of the fight and winning soon after with a rear naked choke. But what if I told you that Momo was a 12-year-old middle-schooler and her opponent was 24. That changes things, no? According to an Uproxx story from earlier this month, Momo began training in karate at the age of 3 and now trains at least 3 1/2 hours a day, six times a week, with Sadanori Yamaguchi, who has trained fighters such as Mizuki Inoue, a 22-year-old who won her first tournament at 16 and has gone on to fight for the Invicta promotion.

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