Following her UFC strawweight title loss to Rose Namajunas at UFC 261 in April, Zhang Weili has begun a training camp ahead of her Octagon return — hinting at an immediate rematch against now-champion, Namajunas, claiming that their rematch will be very good.
Taking co-main event status at UFC 261 from the Vystar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida, Weili suffered a massive quickfire opening round knockout loss, after Namajunas sprang with a huge left high kick, dropping her and following up with some ground strikes, forcing a stoppage from referee, Keith Peterson.
The loss came as Weili’s first under the UFC’s banner and resulted in a title reclamation for Namajunas, who became the sold women’s champion in the history of the organization to lose a championship and then reclaim it.
Faltering at her second attempted title defence, Hebei native, Weili took co-main event status again at UFC 248 back in March of last year, battling with former champion, Joanna Jedrzejczyk to a Fight of the Year winning via split decision over the course of five grueling rounds. Successfully defending the title, Weili had become the first promotional champion hailing from Asia via a UFC Fight Night Shenzhen win against Jessica Andrade the August prior.
Following Namajunas’ title victory in the ‘Sunshine State’ — UFC president, Dana White hinted at an immediate title rematch between the newly-minted titleholder and Weili, however, former champion, Jedrzejczyk as well as inaugural gold holder, Carla Esparza both voiced their calls for rematches of their own against Namajunas, with the latter turning in a brutal second round ground-and-pound stoppage over Weili’s compatriot, Yan Xiaonan at UFC Vegas 27 in May.
Posting on her official Instagram recently, Weili hinted at a potential immediate re-run against Namajunas, as well as detailing how she has begun her latest training camp.
“After a period of rest,” Weili posted. “Start training for my next fight. Champion Rose (Namajunas) is very strong. She is a real ace. I need to work harder and believe that our second second (sic) fight will be a very good fight. Playing against the best is something I’ve always enjoyed doing. That’s what friends wat to see, too.“
Senior writer for FightBook MMA. An aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Producer of news articles, interviews, opinion features, and exclusive features such as, ‘The Fallout’, ‘The Breakdown, and, ‘This Week In MMA’.