Finally, some great news for fans of a good old organised scuffle: the Ultimate Fighting Championship
(UFC) is coming to Beijing for the first time ever this autumn. Having made a successful Mainland China debut last year in Shanghai, they have decided to return for a second time, this time hitting the capital hard.
The Fight Night will be held at the Cadillac Arena on November 24, with tickets
ranging from 280RMB to 16,880RMB and on sale now. No confirmation yet of which fighters will be on the card though, so stay tuned for further announcements.
Given the success of last year's event, its return should come as no surprise, particularly with UFC's Vice President of Asia-Pacific Kevin Chang singling out China as 'the next frontier for the growth of UFC', so they'll be hoping to further build on the sport's burgeoning popularity and fanbase on the Mainland.
UFC has also been working on building up the number of Chinese athletes in the top tiers of the competition for several years now, with notable names including Li Jingliang, Wang Guan (pictured, main) and Song Yadong (pictured, below). The card is likely to feature many Chinese participants, as well some big international heavy-hitters. Conor McGregor? Perhaps unlikely.
Martial arts are obviously a traditional part of Chinese culture
, varying from the aggressive to the meditative, and although UFC is not Chinese (it originated in a Brazilian martial art form called Vale tudo – Portuguese for 'anything goes', before evolving into mixed martial arts), it is easy to see why it is garnering such popularity in China.