Kai Kara-France will face Manel Kape at UFC 293. Two fighters who made their names competing in Asia will be facing off in Sydney in a flyweight fight.
Kara-France (24-11) spent much of his career competing in Hong Kong, Taiwan and mainland China before signing with the UFC. He also had fights in Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Japan.
Last year the New Zealander earned a shot at the interim flyweight title at UFC 277. He was stopped by Brandon Moreno and currently sits at #5 in the flyweight rankings.
Kape (18-6) was the Rizin bantamweight champion when he signed for the UFC. He beat Kai Asakura to win the belt in what was seen as a major upset in Japan but never defended it.
Having lost his first two UFC fights the Angolan is now back on track. He has won three in a row and sits at #9 in the flyweight rankings, a win over Kara-France could earn Kape a coveted top five spot.
— UFC_AUSNZ (@UFC_AUSNZ) July 18, 2023
As previously announced Da Un Jung will be back in action at UFC 293 in Sydney. The Korean light heavyweight has been matched with rising Australian star Carlos Ulberg.
The event is set for September 10th and does not currently have a venue. Jung (15-4-1) got his UFC career off to a very good start with four wins and one draw from his first five fights.
But he has lost his last two making this a must win fight for the 29 year old. Jung is coming off a decision loss to Devin Clarke at UFC Vegas 68, the event which was originally set to take place in Seoul.
View this post on Instagram
Best of the rest
In the flyweight division Casey O’Neill has been matched with Viviane Araújo. The Scottish fighter will be very familiar to Asian MMA fans as she has spent a lot of time training at Tiger Muay Thai and earned her UFC contract after impressing at UAE Warriors 13.
O’Neill (9-1) is coming off the first defeat of her career. She dropped a decision to Jennifer Maia at UFC 286 and dropped down to #12 in the rankings.
Araújo (11-5) is coming off back to back decision losses and has lost three out of her last four. The Brazilian is a Pancrase veteran who holds wins over Emi Fujino and Ayaka Miura.
This will be the UFC’s first event in Sydney since 2017. It is set to take place at the Qudos Bank Arena and Ulberg will surely be part of a large contingent of Australian fighters on the card.