Latest News

Back to Latest News back


UFC announces details of Saudi debut and commitment to more Perth bouts

UFC announces details of Saudi debut and commitment to more Perth bouts
March 28, 2024

The Ultimate Fighting Championship has revealed details of its first event in Saudi Arabia on 22nd June 22, while also announcing a multi-year partnership with the Western Australian Government to continue staging events at Perth’s RAC Arena.

Originally planned for its Saudi Arabian debut on 2nd March as part of the Riyadh Season festival but postponed, reportedly due to concerns over the quality of the card, UFC Chief Executive Dana White has now announced that June’s event will pit former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker against undefeated rising star Khamzat Chimaev.

The co-main event will feature a matchup between Sergei Pavlovich and Alexander Volkov, with the card to also include Kevin Gastelum vs Daniel Rodriguez, Johnny Walker vs Volkan Oezdemir, and Shara Magomedov vs Ihor Potieria.

The UFC announced in October that it had agreed a hosting deal with the Saudi General Entertainment Authority.

While the UFC is making its first move into Saudi Arabia, its subsidiary organisation, WWE, has long established ties in the Kingdom. WWE has staged shows in the country since 2014 and currently holds a deal to host two major events there per year.

Meanwhile, the UFC’s new multi-year deal with the Western Australian Government will begin with an event at Perth’s RAC Arena on 18th August.

UFC 305 will mark the third time Perth has hosted a UFC pay-per-view event following UFC 221 in February 2018 and UFC 284 in February 2023. The new deal will see the UFC work closely with Tourism Western Australia to bring an additional event to Perth.

Last year’s event in Perth broke RAC Arena records for revenue and sporting event attendance. UFC 284 also broke the national arena record for the highest-grossing ticket sales of any event, but this was later surpassed by UFC 293 at Sydney’s Qudos Bank Arena in September.

Welcoming the return of UFC, Western Australia Premier, Roger Cook stated “the return of UFC to Perth in 2024 is a major coup for Western Australia, following the roaring success of UFC 284 that injected millions into our economy last year.

“UFC has proven to be a huge drawcard with a dedicated fan base, and we expect to see thousands of out-of-state visitors travel to Perth to attend this blockbuster.

“Western Australia continues to strengthen its reputation for hosting world-class sporting events, and with UFC boasting the best of the best in MMA, UFC 305 represents yet another high-calibre spectacle in our events calendar.”

September’s event in Sydney marked the start of a four-year deal between the UFC and the NSW Government. Sydney is set to stage two more events by 2027.

Images: UFC action at the RAC Arena. Credit: RAC Arena.

Related Articles

27th March 2024 - NSW Government refuses funding request for Leichhardt Oval upgrade

6th February 2024 - Boxing fans warned to avoid ticket scalpers and scammers for event at Perth’s RAC Arena

29th December 2023 - United Cup at Perth’s RAC Arena showcases Western Australia to global fans

29th November 2023 - Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh secures rights to World Expo 2030

1st November 2023 - SportAccord President describes World Combat Games in Riyadh as the ‘best ever’

22nd September 2023 - RAC Arena welcomes recognition as Australian Event Awards’ Venue of the Year

5th September 2023 - Perth’s RAC Arena welcomes new community partners for years to 2025

11th August 2023 - RAC Arena and Channel 7 Telethon Trust secure prestigious MEA award

20th October 2023 - UFC extends deal for Abu Dhabi fight deal for five more years

16th September 2023 - UFC 293 breaks records in ticket sales and corporate support at Qudos Bank Arena

21st July 2023 - UFC Gyms silent on demise of Australian master franchisor but still looking for global expansion

18th May 2023 - UFC agrees multi-year deal to host fight events in Sydney

3rd April 2023 - UFC acquires WWE in US$9.3 billion takeover deal

17th February 2023 - UFC 284 event sets new sporting event attendance record for Perth’s RAC Arena

7th February 2023 - Aiming to create next UFC star Perth martial arts gym offers one-year MMA scholarship

9th January 2023 - Inflated ticket holders at risk of being refused entry to UFC event at Perth’s RAC Arena

17th August 2021 - UFC Fight Island set to return to Abu Dhabi in October

8th January 2021 - Abu Dhabi’s new Etihad Arena to open with fans in attendance for UFC fights

28th September 2020 - UFC Fight Island returns to Abu Dhabi

26th February 2020 - Perth’s hosting of UFC event a major coup for Western Australia tourism

30th April 2019 - UFC agrees long-term deal for fight events to return to Abu Dhabi

1st November 2017 - Perth Arena to host UFC championship fight event