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Kunlun Fight lands knockout blow Down Under

By Yang Xinwei | China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-20 07:00

 Kunlun Fight lands knockout blow Down Under

Jiang Hua (center), founder of Kunlun Fight, poses with partners and fighters after announcing that Australia will host world-class MMA shows this fall.Provided To China Daily

After becoming China's first sports brand to air on Fox TV in the US, kickboxing promotion company Kunlun Fight (KLF) is now expanding its global reach to Australia.

In a historic deal struck in Melbourne last Thursday, KLF has joined forces with the Australian Fighting Championship mixed martial arts organization and Ostar International Media Group to bring four world-class shows Down Under.

Starting with back-to-back blockbusters at Melbourne Pavilion on Oct 28 and 29, the alliance will then travel to Sydney in November.

The inaugural event will showcase the KLF's kickboxing on the Friday night, followed by the cream of the AFC's MMA crop on Saturday evening, when light heavyweight champion Jamie Abdallah is slated to fight former UFC, Pride and Bellator powerhouse Rameau Sokoudjou in the main event.

Kunlun Fight was the brainchild of Jiang Hua, the founder of KLF Pacific Asia. After debuting in 2014, it is now valued at over $350 million.

"It's going to be an exciting event," Jiang said at the media conference to announce the deal, which was attended by a host of fighters, including 11-time world kickboxing champion Stan Longinidis and AFC star Abdallah.

"I hope through this platform we can bring traditional Chinese wushu (martial arts) to Melbourne and to the world, and the world's fighting to China," he added.

"Of course, I also hope tourism and investment will also benefit from this, and enhance the friendship between the two countries. This is an importance alliance in the southern hemisphere as we bring the sport to the world."

Both Kunlun Fight and the AFC see the venture as an important stepping stone to the global market.

"It's our first time in Australia and we'd like to impress our audience. We've got the pick of the top fighters in all disciplines and they will showcase their skills on the world stage," Jiang said.

"We have experienced growth at KLF and we'd like to tour around the world, using this as a platform to build the alliance on the global stage.

"We will also be showcasing some movie celebrities, so it's going to be an exciting promotion.


"We will be working closely with AFC and it will be broadcast in four different languages to 82 countries and regions.

"I'm proud to say we have 107 member countries in KLF at the moment, which is an astounding base."

AFC chief executive Adam Milankovic said: "It's a partnership that will change the landscape of the sport. It will give us the opportunity to stage massive shows in Australia and give both brands - KLF and the AFC - exposure on the global stage."

Founded by Milankovic in 2011, the AFC recently branched out to China, where it hosted two successful shows at a state-of-the-art facility in Xi'an, Shaanxi province.

Herald Sun contributed to this story


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