Xtreme Kombat League (XKL) has announced its first major international mixed martial arts (MMA) event – “The Road To Dubai” – which starts in Michigan on August 15 2009, followed by a new concept reality TV show and with two of the top names in the MMA world, Pat Miletich and Dan Severn as team coaches. Pat and Dan will be giving their expertise in training these fighters during the reality show. The main title fight event will take place in Dubai as a signature event of Dubai Shopping Festival in February 2010, with a potential 500 million worldwide viewers.
XKL has exploded onto the global MMA scene with this announcement. The league’s first major event will be the first ever mixed martial arts (MMA) title fights to be staged in the Middle East. The international amateur qualifiers will take place in front of 10,000 excited MMA fans in Michigan, USA.
“We’ve worked long and hard to reach this stage,” said Eric Rafiq, President and CEO of XKL. “After many months of preparation, we’re delighted to have made such incredible progress – our association with the Government of Dubai gives us the perfect platform to take MMA to a whole new level of professionalism and excitement, reaching current and new fans both here in North America and throughout the world.”
“We have strategically set our base internationally and are determined to make XKL a virtual seal of approval for sports entertainment excellence around the world – we believe that the best pound for pound fighters deserves to be recognised on the world stage”, added Shan Hasan, XKL’s VP of North American Marketing.
Dubai Shopping Festival, in association with XKL, will give MMA fans across the Middle East region their first ever opportunity to see some of the world’s leading fighters compete for real title belts. Fighters from around the world will compete in the qualifying heat to earn their place on a reality show – “The Xtreme Fighter” – that will be filmed in Dubai throughout September and October, and the title bouts at the main event in Dubai.
The August 15 qualifiers at Eastern Michigan University Convocation Centre, Detroit, Michigan, USA will feature amazing international MMA fighters, live musical performances and incredible pyrotechnics. Lucky fans at the event will also have the chance to win some fantastic prizes – XKL will be giving away 2 brand new cars and 4 trips to Dubai to attend the Main Event in February 2010.
Filmed on the beaches of Dubai, and set against stunning desert landscapes and the city’s impressive architectural skyline, the 13 weekly one hour episodes of “The Xtreme Fighter” will be broadcast around the world and will set the stage for the league championship belts. The main event will be held at the new state-of-the-art Dubai Sports City Arena, which can hold thirty-five thousand people. MMA fans from all corners of the world can follow all of the latest news on XKL’s website, www.xtremekombatleague.com, where they can create their own fighter profiles and have a chance to be selected for the next event. Live footage will be aired online around the world through Digital Stream and shown on many sports stations at later dates.
“For the title belt fights in Dubai, we’re planning a truly world-class event that will set new standards,” said Rafiq. “Everything is being designed to create the maximum excitement and deliver an MMA experience that will be truly unforgettable – we’ll stage an unprecedented half time show that will feature big name international celebrity musicians, breathtaking light shows and professional dancers.”
“We’re delighted to bring such a high profile event to Dubai,” said Laila Suhail, CEO of Dubai Shopping Festival. “It’s a major achievement for Dubai to be staging such a massive international event, and we’re delighted to have struck a long-term deal with XKL to bring truly world-class MMA title fights to Dubai as part of DSF.”
MMA, acknowledged as the world’s fastest growing sport, attracts audiences that now exceed major sporting events in the USA, and generates billions of dollars through merchandise sales and pay per view broadcasts. XKL has the solid support of key sporting industry figures and the endorsement of world famous sports personalities including Mohammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Thomas Hearns, Larry Holmes, Pat Miletich and Dan Severn. The company is strongly committed to the long-term future of its fighters and to serve the local community, having pledged a significant contribution of its earnings to charity and community groups.
“Dubai and the Middle East represent a new and potentially huge target audience for MMA,” said Rafiq. “The Road to Dubai will fill the void that currently exists between fans across the region and the rest of the world, and MMA fans around the world are guaranteed the best MMA event ever staged. We’re very proud to have the opportunity to launch XKL’s first event in the Motor City, Detroit – the economy of Michigan has certainly suffered over the last year or so, and we at XKL are pleased to be in a position where we can help get Michigan’s economy moving again.”