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UFC names Shenzhen as new host city

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has announced that Shenzhen will host its third event in China on August 31.

Set to take place at Universiade Sports Centre, UFC Fight Night Shenzhen will follow the inaugural outing in Shanghai in November 2017 and last year’s event in Beijing. Airline AirAsia will serve as presenting partner of the Shenzhen event.

China is a key market for the UFC, with the promotion to open its UFC Performance Institute in Shanghai next month. UFC has signed China’s best MMA athletes, such as women’s strawweight Zhang Weili, who has risen to rank at number six and has the potential to be the first UFC champion from China.

The UFC last week agreed a deal with Weibo, making it the promotion’s official social media platform in China.

“We continue to add new cities in China to our global calendar of events, and we are excited to see the momentum that is steadily building,” UFC senior vice-president for Asia-Pacific, Kevin Chang, said.

“China is the most important growth market for UFC, and our ongoing success is a testament to the loyalty of our passionate fans, the ongoing support from our partners, and the work we are doing to fast-track the development of UFC ready athletes in this region.”