A Featherweight contest has now been booked for the UFC’s return trip to Abu Dhabi, scheduled to take place on April 11th at the Yas Island venue.
Fan favorite Tatsuya Kawajiri steps back into the Octagon for a second time, following a successful debut, while UFC veteran Clay Guida looks to get back in the win column after getting stopped for the first time via TKO in his professional career.
Sources close to the situation confirmed the match-up with Fight Sport Asia earlier today.
Tatsuya Kawajiri (33-7-2), who began his Mixed Martial Arts journey back in 2000, finally signed with the UFC late last year. Having been in the sport for over a decade, Kawajiri fought for some of the biggest promotions — Shooto, DREAM, ONE FC, Strikeforce and PRIDE Fighting Championships.
Now the 35-year-old fights under the bright lights of the UFC, where he made his promotional debut at the turn of the year defeating late replacement Sean Soriano in the UFC’s first trip to Singapore.
Currently on a 6-fight win streak, with five of those coming at 145-lbs. The fighter known as “Crusher” isn’t slowing down anytime soon, eager to test his skills against the best in the world and make a run for the Featherweight gold.
Clay Guida (30-14), a Jackson’s MMA product has been around the Octagon since 2006 fighting a who’s who of the sport. Having fought his entire career in the Lightweight division, Guida decided to drop down to Featherweight following back-to-back losses against Gray Maynard & Benson Henderson.
The 32-year-old made his 145-lb debut against former Sengoku Champion Hatsu Hioki. Guida was declared the winner at UFC on Fox 6, but in many peoples eyes it was a questionable decision.
However, having defeated Hioki, the high-energy Guida would then lock horns with top contender Chad Mendes. After a fairly one-sided fight, Mendes went on to finish Guida via TKO to become the first man to ever do so.
Coming off a loss, Guida now turns his attention to 2014. And his first hurdle will be against Japanese icon and powerhouse wrestler Tatsuya Kawajiri.
*Headlining the card sees Heavyweights collide, as Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (34-8-1-1) faces Roy Nelson (19-9) in a must win fight for both men.
Ultimate Fighting Championship, 4/11/14
“UFC Fight Night 39″
Abu Dhabi, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Roy Nelson
Ryan LaFlare vs. John Howard
Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Clay Guida
Photo credit: Mitch Viquez/ZUFFA LLC via Getty Images
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