Weili Zhang vs. Rose Namajunas Made Official For UFC 261
The strawweight title clash between Weili Zhang and Rose Namajunas has finally been made official.
Zhang is the reigning UFC Strawweight Champion. Namajunas once held the 115-pound gold. With Zhang’s most recent outing taking “Fight of the Year” honors and Namajunas having a fighting style that fans appreciate, this is shaping up to be one of the most highly-anticipated female fights in all of combat sports.
A classic in the making!
— UFC (@ufc) March 9, 2021
Zhang has long expressed interest in sharing the Octagon with Namajunas. Back in 2019, Zhang told MMA Junkie that she considered Namajunas to be a top-tier martial artist.
“I always want to fight the best, but it is not my job to determine who the best is. If you are asking me if I think Joanna is the best then the answer is no. Joanna is a worthy opponent and is among the best, but in my opinion, Rose is the best martial artist. And when the time is right, it will be an honor to test my skills against hers.
“I think Rose is a true master and know our paths will cross. I like Rose very much, and to share the octagon with her will be the true test. I look forward to seeing her return, and I wish her good health and prosperity.”
During an interview with ESPN’s Ariel Helwani, Namajunas also said she hoped to share the Octagon with Zhang.
“Ever since I saw her fight Tecia (Torres), I’ve been scouting her out a little bit. I just think it’s gonna be a beautiful display of martial arts. She’s a master; I’m a master. It’s gonna be really cool… I would love to fight her. She’s awesome. She’s really technical, really strong, just overall a master. That’s something that really interests me a lot.”
The main event of UFC 261 is expected to be a women’s flyweight title bout between champion Valentina Shevchenko and Jessica Andrade.