SEOUL – South Korean singer Jungkook of K-pop group BTS has finally sparred with One Championship star Yoshihiro Akiyama.
Akiyama, 46, had seen a video of Jungkook, 24, practising boxing on his coach’s Instagram in April and commented: “Please tell him we should spar next time.”
Jungkook’s coach replied: “BTS’ Jungkook saw the news and smiled as he said brightly, ‘Please murder me'”, according to a translation from entertainment site Allkpop.
Akiyama is a Japanese mixed martial arts fighter and judoka of Korean descent who is also known as Choo Sung-hoon.
He won the judo gold medal at the 2001 Asian Championships for South Korea and for Japan at the 2002 Asian Games before embarking on his professional mixed martial arts career.
On Wednesday (June 29), Akiyama shared on social media a short video of him and Jungkook sparring and a photo of them giving a thumbs-up, with the caption: “Nice fight”.
In the video, the two wore face guards and gloves while sparring and hugged each other afterwards.
Jungkook recently collaborated with American singer-songwriter Charlie Puth on a new single, Left And Right, which was released on June 24.
BTS announced in June that they were taking a hiatus to focus on solo projects.