Weili Zhang to defend strawweight title at UFC 261 against Rose Namajunas

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Weili Zhang will look to defend her strawweight title for a second time against Rose Namajunas.

For months now, many have been wondering when Zhang would fight again and who she would face. She had options of fighting Namajunas or Carla Esparza or even rematching Joanna Jedrzejczyk. Yet, according to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani, Zhang is set to defend her belt against Namajunas on April 24 at UFC 261.

“Zhang Weili vs. Rose Namajunas for the strawweight title is in the works for UFC 261 on April 24, per multiple sources. The fight isn’t finalized just yet, however, that’s the date the promotion and both fighters are targeting at this time. Hoping to get done in coming days. The UFC had been working on holding that event in Singapore, per sources, but sources say it’s now looking like it will take place in Las Vegas. Those plans aren’t finalized just yet either.”

Weili Zhang has not fought since she defeated Jedrzejczyk at UFC 248 in one of the best fights of all-time. It was a back-and-forth striking affair with Zhang winning a split decision. The Chinese fighter is currently 21-1 as a pro and became the UFC champion with a 42-second TKO win over Jessica Andrade. She is currently 5-0 in the UFC with her other wins over Tecia Torres, Jessica Aguilar, and Danielle Taylor.

Rose Namajunas, meanwhile, returned to the win column last time out with a decision win over Jessica Andrade at UFC 251. Before that, she suffered a KO loss to Andrade to lose her strawweight title after dethroning Jedrzejczyk in back-to-back fights including winning the title by first-round TKO. She also holds notable wins over Paige VanZant and Michelle Waterson.

It is likely Zhang vs Namajunas will serve as the co-main event to Valentina Shevchenko defending her flyweight title against Jessica Andrade in the main event.

Who do you think will win, Weili Zhang or Rose Namajunas?

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