The Japanese players continue to impress everyone with their defensive strategies that now bolster higher speed and better reaction times made evident by JC Akira and Kobun (Hayate) in the first match of Top 4.
Run that Back plays as Mai and stays true to the name with impressive speed and well-utilized range against Tanni's Zack who was able to adapt for the next game with incredible zoning and defensive strategies. Run that Back moved on to fight Kobun and was successful. They were very focused on their first fight, and props must be given to both of them for not falling off the Scramble level until the end. Run Back came into his own in the second fight and defeated Kobun with haste.
So Run that Back definitely earned his spot against JC Akira in the Grand Final. Akira and Mai duke it out on the streets in the first game and immediately we see thought provoking exchanges between them both proving you just can't mash buttons in DOA to win. This Mai just knows how to poke and stun unlike any other Mai player I've seen for DOA. All over her tools are being utilized to the maximum in this fight -- but it's just hard for her to get enough damage going up against Akira's combos, strength, fuzzy guards and reads.
At the Circus you watch Run that Back fight for his life as JC Akira wouldn't let Mai get anything started; this Mai bit and tore her way through him to get just two round wins in a great effort. In the final swing, Akira goes all out for that damage and quickly punches his ticket to NEC XVIII in December. Congats, JC Akira!