MMA: UFC to introduce new flyweight category for women fighters

MMA UFC to introduce new flyweight category for women fighters

Similar to what they did with women's strawweight in 2014, a season-long tournament on The Ultimate Fighter will be the proving ground for the company's newest division.

Demetrious Johnson is the reigning king of the men's division and the UFC have now extended their women's game by adding a fourth division.

Now the UFC has three female weight divisions, bantamweight (135 pounds), strawweight (115 pounds), and featherweight (145 pounds). The Las Vegas-based promotion announced on Wednesday evening that "The Ultimate Fighter 26" would launch the women's flyweight division and crown an inaugural champion at the conclusion of the season. The 135-pound bantamweight class was the first women's division in the UFC, debuting in 2013 with champion Ronda Rousey. The victor of that season was Carla Esparza, the first ever women's 115-pound champion. Tryouts are slated for 8 a.m. on Tuesday, May 23, at Palace Station Hotel in Las Vegas. However, UFC President Dana White later told Yahoo Sports that the release was sent in error and the promotion had not finalized the addition of a 125-pound female weight class. Despite those claims, several top women's fighters have been clamoring for the chance to compete in a more natural weight class at 125-pounds rather than fighting up at bantamweight or moving down to strawweight.

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Although this will be the official start of the women's flyweight division, Joanne Calderwood defeated Valerie Letourneau in a 125-pound matchup a year ago.

The UFC is introducing a 12th weight class.

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