China

Chinese MMA fighter Zhang wins UFC debut

Zhang Tiequan, China’s first ever fighter in the UFC didn’t take long to trap and submit his opponent to get his first UFC win. Zhang, who won his first match in America last September but had lost in his last fight in December, is now 13-1 in Mixed Martial Arts. I had earlier mentioned him here and it’s good to see him doing well. For those who don’t know, the US-based UFC (Ultimate Fighting League) is the biggest MMA organization in the world, but that isn’t the only notable reason why Zhang’s victory is so special. You don’t normally see Chinese fighters competing in MMA outside of China, because of lack of interest, better options (China’s got its own form of MMA, Sanshou, which is very popular) and inexperience. Of course, Japan is the other major stage for MMA, besides the US, in terms of organizations and fighters, and yet you don’t see too many Japanese fighters fighting or doing well in the US or UFC, Yushin Okami being a rare exception.

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