Overeem requests September fight in Japan

UFC heavyweight Alistair Overeem has requested a spot on the company’s Sept. 20 event in Saitama, Japan.

Overeem (37-13) is recovering from an elbow surgery he underwent last month, but he has informed the UFC he’ll be ready to fight by September.

The former Strikeforce and Dream champion is apparently hoping that the fight will take place in Japan, where he has fought professionally 25 times during his career. His last fight there was a 19-second knockout of Todd Duffee in December 2010.

UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta informed ESPN.com of Overeem’s request, saying the heavyweight would most likely return in September, possibly in Japan.

“Alistair is looking to return in September,” Fertitta said. “We haven’t finalized it yet, but he’s expressed an interest in fighting in Japan. I don’t know if we’ll have a spot on the card for that, but I would expect him to come back in that time frame.”

No bouts have officially been announced as of yet for the Sept. 20 event, which will take place at Saitama Arena.

Overeem is 2-2 since he joined the UFC roster in late 2011. He defeated Frank Mir via unanimous decision in his most recent bout, at UFC 169 in February.