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Former kickboxing star Gokhan Saki’s UFC debut set for Japan event in September

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Former GLORY Kickboxing champion Gokhan Saki is set to meet Henrique da Silva in his first UFC fight in September.

Gokhan Saki by Ben Pontier/Glory

Gokhan Saki’s UFC debut is official.

The former kickboxing standout is scheduled to meet Luis Henrique da Silva in a light heavyweight bout at UFC Fight Night 116 in Japan. UFC officials confirmed the news Friday.

Saki signed with the organization two months ago. He only has one mixed martial arts fight to his name — a TKO loss in July 2004, just over 13 years ago. Since that short stint in the cage, Saki has made a name for himself in kickboxing, particularly under the GLORY banner. Boasting a record of 83-16 in the ring, “The Rebel” is a former GLORY light heavyweight champion and tournament winner.

Saki’s last kickboxing fight was in April 2015 and was a unanimous-decision victory for him at GFC Fight Series 3. The Dutch-Turkish fighter holds wins over Ray Sefo, Tyrone Spong, and Melvin Manhoef.

Da Silva started his UFC run in June 2016 with two straight finishes — a TKO over Jonathan Wilson and a submission over Joachim Christensen. Since then, however, “Frankenstein” has lost three in a row, two fights by stoppage. Most recently, the Brazilian was knocked out by Ion Cutelaba.

UFC Fight Night 116 takes place live from Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan on Sept. 22. In the main event, Mauricio Rua faces Ovince Saint Preux in a rematch.