The Festival will be held on Yas Island and feature four fight nights staged through July 11
Abu Dhabi has been confirmed as host of the UFC’s historic Fight Island next month, in a groundbreaking collaboration with the world’s lead mixed martial arts promotion.
The fight festival, which will feature four fight nights beginning with the pay-per-view UFC 251 on July 11, will take place at an existing venue on Yas Island, with a specifically marked “safe zone” housing everyone connected to the event. Du Forum has been considered as host for the bouts.
UFC 251 is said to feature three championship bouts, according to UFC president Dana White, with the succeeding three events falling on July 15, 18 and 25. Given the restrictions in place because of the coronavirus pandemic, fans will not be able to attend.
Fight Island represents a major coup for Abu Dhabi, who last year signed a five-year partnership with the UFC. The first event in the agreement was staged in September, with the hugely successful UFC 242 headlined by undefeated lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov. The promotion is scheduled to return to the capital later this year, most likely in late October.
White said: “We came up with the idea of having fights on ‘Fight Island’ because we needed a destination to hold international events during the global pandemic. Abu Dhabi has been an amazing location to hold fights over the past 10 years and it is the perfect place for these events.
“The infrastructure we are building will be such a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the fighters that’s never been done before – from the arena, the private training facility, and the octagon on the island – it’s going to be an experience that none of us will ever forget. I can’t wait to deliver amazing fights from Yas Island”.