UFC Returns to Fight Island! | Yas Island | Abu Dhabi

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Legendary UFC fighters Nurmagomedov and Gaethje, Adesanya and Costa, and Holm and Adana went head to head during the event!

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Following the undisputed success of the July 2020 inaugural series, the Return to UFC Fight Island is the second event in the UFC Fight Island™ series, returning to Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island, a premier hub for world-class leisure and entertainment.

The series’ epic comeback takes place less than three months after the UFC Fight Island, marking another historic first for Abu Dhabi and positioning the emirate as the sporting capital of the world.

Khabib Nurmagomedov was declared the winner against Justin Gaethje, in what was the final fight of his illustrious career that saw him unbeaten in 29 MMA bouts. Khabib announced soon after the fight that he would be retiring.

In another headline match, Israel Adesanya floored Paulo Costa to retain the middleweight championship in the UFC 253 held at Abu Dhabi's Fight Island on Sunday. Adesanya delivered a technical knockout in 3 minutes, 59 seconds of the second round.

In the women’s headline match, Holly Holm, the former UFC bantamweight champion and a multiple-time world champion in boxing, beat Irene Aldana, with the fight lasting 25 minutes.
Showcasing the Safe Zone concept – a safety bubble for all - UFC Fight Island (where the UFC fights were held) was conceptualised and managed by the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi.

Built to ensure a large-scale Covid-free event in the midst of a pandemic, what was impressive about this, and what set Abu Dhabi’s undertaking apart from other Covid-free bubbles, was the sheer size of the self-contained environment. Participants were not confined to their hotel, but rather had access to Yas Beach, Yas Golf Club and Yas Links golf course, as well as the Yas Marina Circuit racing track. To make this happen, Abu Dhabi had to administer roughly 18,000 tests.

In preparation, Abu Dhabi also had to lockdown and Covid proof seven hotels (2,200 hotel rooms in total), an arena, beach, golf course and racing circuit. Then it got the testing in place, catering, support staff tested, isolated, and in place, all before any door was opened.

To attend Fight Island, all participants were required to have a negative Covid test before boarding their flights. They were then tested again upon arrival and isolated in their rooms at the hotel for 48 hours. After proving negative, there was still a third test, but after this test, the visitors were permitted to leave their hotel rooms and explore the rest of the bubble.

As you can see Abu Dhabi takes the safety of its visitors seriously. The same goes for the tourists who visit the emirate. The emirate’s ‘Go Safe Certification’ enforces global safety and hygiene standards across Abu Dhabi’s hotels, attractions, malls, hospitality facilities and public venues, and supports wider efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19, which include widespread testing, city-wide sanitation, social distancing, and enhanced healthcare services.

If you’re thinking of visiting Dubai, come to Abu Dhabi before or after your Dubai trip. Only an hour away from Dubai by car, Abu Dhabi is a must-visit stop on your UAE trip.

UFC returns to its international home in Abu Dhabi in 2021 for Fight Island Triple Header Week that will see the return of fans to live events on January 16, 20 and 24. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xc8nJL-xMxQ
Learn more and book tickets: https://visitabudhabi.ae/en/campaign/ufc-fight-island

In October 2020, UFC returned to Fight Island in Abu Dhabi, taking over Yas Island for another one-of-a-kind showdown spectacle. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_2Jp-kEVG0

Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje went head to head at UFC 254 at UFC Fight Island. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OlP3qiXYl30

Learn more about upcoming UFC events

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