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Khamzat Chimaev vs. Robert Whittaker to Headline UFC Saudi Arabia on June 22


Ultimate Fighting Championship’s inaugural visit to Saudi
Arabia will have a marquee bout at the top of the bill.

UFC CEO Dana White announced late Wednesday evening that Khamzat
Chimaev will face Robert
Whittaker in the card’s middleweight main event on June 22.
Meanwhile, Sergei
Pavlovich will square off against Alexander
Volkov at heavyweight in the co-headliner. Volkov had been
previously expected to meet Jailton
Almeida at UFC 302, but apparently those plans have

White also confirmed the following three bouts for UFC Saudi
Arabia: Kelvin
Gastelum vs. Daniel
Rodriguez at welterweight; Johnny
Walker vs. Volkan
Oezdemir at light heavyweight and Sharabutdin
Magomedov vs. Ihor
Potieria at light heavyweight.

“This card is going to be badass from top to bottom,” White said.
“It’s going to be historic. It’s our first ever show from the

UFC Saudi Arabia will air on ABC, per White. The event is a far cry
from the card that was originally expected to take place in Saudi
Arabia on March 2. The promotion’s trip to the country was
reportedly postponed due to a lack of satisfaction from the
“powers that be” in Saudi Arabia with the quality of the card.
Instead, UFC Fight Night 238 took place at the UFC Apex in Las
Vegas and saw Jairzinho
Rozenstruik defeat Shamil
Gaziev in the main event.

Chimaev is unbeaten in 13 professional appearances — including
seven bouts under the UFC banner. In his last outing, “Borz” made a
successful middleweight debut, as he took a majority decision
against ex-welterweight champ Kamaru
Usman at UFC 294. Chimaev owns other notable victories over the
likes of Kevin
Holland, Gilbert
Burns and Jingliang

A former middleweight champion, Whittaker was successful in his
first appearance of 2024, earning a three-round verdict against
Costa at UFC 298. The 33-year-old is16-5 during a tenure with
the Las Vegas-based promotion that began in 2012.

Pavlovich will be competing for the first time since UFC 295, when
he suffered a 69-second knockout loss to Tom
Aspinall in an interim heavyweight title tilt. Prior to that
defeat, the Russian had defeated six consecutive Octagon opponents
via first-round knockout.

Volkov, meanwhile, has won three straight outings since falling to
Aspinall at UFC Fight Night 204. “Drago” is coming off a
second-round submission win against Tai Tuivasa
at UFC 293 this past September.

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