Undefeated Juliana Velasquez is set to make the first defense of her flyweight MMA title against the current kickboxing champion Denise Kielholtz in the headliner of Bellator 262 on Friday, July 16. The event airs live on Showtime from Mohegan Sun Arena, starting at 9 pm ET / 6 pm PT.
Velasquez (11-0) claimed the belt against former champion Ilima-Lei Macfarlane by unanimous decision in December 2020. Before that he similarly defeated Bruna Ellen and stopped Kristina Williams in the second round.
“I’m extremely excited and happy to get back in the Bellator cage and defend my title for the first time,” said Velasquez. “I’ve been training really hard, and I’m fully prepared to put on an incredible performance for my fans. Denise has been a great champion in the Bellator kickboxing ring, but this MMA belt is mine and it will be going back to Brazil with me after the fight.”
Kielholtz (6-2) was last seem inside the MMA cage in October 2020, when she KO’d Kate Jackson in Round 1 and secured her fourth straight victory. Prior to that she submitted Williams and Sabriye Sengul in the first round, and TKO’d Bryony Tyrell in Round 3.
“This is the moment I’ve been waiting for since I was a child,” said Kielholtz. “My journey in martial arts started when I was nine years old. I have earned multiple championships from kickboxing and judo and I feel like the universe has put everything together. All the hard work, all the sacrifices I have made in my life have all led me to this opportunity. This will be the crowning achievement of my career. This is mine.”
Other bouts featured on the Bellator 262 fight card are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
Bellator 262: Velasquez vs Kielholtz tickets
Bellator 262 tickets go on sale on Friday, June 4 via Ticketmaster and Bellator.com. Presale starts on Thursday, June 3 from 10 am to 10 pm ET. Tickets pricing from $60, as per announcement sent out by the promotion.