The UFC has wasted no time booking Zhang Weili for a top-ranked opponent after her impressive showing at UFC Beijing earlier this month.
The promotion Thursday announced that Zhang would get a big step-up in the form of “Tiny Tornado” Tecia Torres at UFC 235.
— UFC (@ufc) November 30, 2018
The 29-year-old from Hebei could not have been more impressive last Saturday in Beijing, seeing off the American veteran and one-time top-ranked strawweight Jessica Aguilar (20-7) with a flurry of blows and an arm bar when they hit the canvas, to end matters at 3.41 of the first.
The fight means Zhang will be the first Chinese athlete on the UFC roster to compete against a top-ranked opponent. Zhang will bring a record of 18-1, including nine KOs – to Vegas and an air that she could be the first on UFC’s China roster to challenge for a UFC title.
“I am very excited to compete with the sixth-ranked player and my team. I didn’t expect to challenge the top 10 so soon. It feels closer to my dream.”
Torres currently has a record of 10 wins and 3 losses. The 29-year-old Torres participated in the 20th season of The Ultimate Fighter and reached the semi-finals, but was finally won by the final champion Carla Esparza.
After signing UFC, Torres won five of her first six matches and was once a popular candidate for the champion challenger. This year she has dropped two losses to Jessica Andrade and former champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk.
UFC 235 takes place in Las Vegas on 3 March.