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UFC re-books Carla Esparza vs. Marina Rodriguez for July 25 Fight Island event

After COVID-19 thwarts their original booking, Carla Esparza and Marina Rodriguez get a new date for their bout.

According to MMA Fighting the UFC has re-booked a strawweight bout between Carla Esparza and Marina Rodriguez for July 25, at the fabled ‘Fight Island’ (Yas Island, UAE).

This fight was supposed to happen on Yas Island on July 15th. However, it fell apart after one of Rodriguez’s corners tested positive for COVID-19. Rodriguez did not test positive for the virus.

Rodriguez will quarantine at a hotel in Sao Paulo, Brazil and leave for Abu Dhabi this week.

For Esparza, the first strawweight champion in both UFC and Invicta FC history, this will be her second fight in the COVID-19 era. At UFC 249—held without fans in Jacksonville, FL—she beat Michelle Waterson by split decision. That win extended Esparza’s winning streak to three.

In 2019 she beat Alexa Grasso in a Fight of the Night at UFC Fight Night: Rodriguez vs. Stephens and bested Virna Jandiroba by unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night: Jacare vs. Hermansson. Those wins came after back-to-back losses in 2018 to Claudia Gadelha and Tatiana Suarez. The 32-year-old’s record currently stands at 22-6.

Rodriguez is a member of the UFC’s ever-shrinking undefeated club with a record of 12-0-2. She joined the UFC in 2018 after a successful appearance on Dana White’s Contender Series Brazil.

In her proper promotional debut she fought to a majority draw with Randa Markos. After that she beat Jessica Aguilar and Tecia Torres. Her most recent fight—against Cynthia Calvillo at UFC on ESPN: Overeem vs. Rozenstruik in December—was another draw.

The UFC’s July 25th card is currently scheduled to feature former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker vs. Darren Till as the main event. That card also includes Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua vs. Antônio Rogério ‘Minotouro’ Nogueira 3 and Fabrizio Werdum vs. Alexander Gustafsson.