ESPN STAR Sports Signs up a 5 Year TV Broadcast Rights Deal with

New Delhi, Delhi, India, Wednesday, March 13, 2013 -- (Business Wire India) 
More than 250 top male and female MMA fighters from India and abroad will slug
it out across 11 weight categories 
Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt and top fighters will be seen in a star studded
campaign across the STAR network 
ESPN STAR Sports, Asia's leading sports broadcaster, today announced a 5 year
broadcast deal with Super Fight League (SFL), Asia's leading Mixed Martial Arts
property which is the brain child of Raj Kundra, owner of Rajasthan Royals and
Sanjay Dutt, the Bollywood action superstar. The network will cover 23 SFL Fight
Nights live on a fortnightly basis from the 2013-14 season which kicks off in
Mumbai on March 29, 2013 and will continue all year round till March end 2014.  
Ever since its launch in 2012, SFL has gained a lot of traction amongst MMA
enthusiasts in the country. This year a total of around 250 fighters, male and
female, from India and abroad will fight it out for the coveted Championship
Title Belt and the right to be crowned SFL World Champion. This season will see
participants from top notch MMA playing countries like Japan, Brazil and USA. A
lot of NRI MMA fighters from countries like Australia, UK, Canada, Germany and
USA will also be in seen in action and add a lot of flavor in this high octane
contact sport.  
Speaking on the occasion, Vijay Rajput, Chief Operating Officer, ESPN Software
India Pvt. Ltd, said, “We believe in offering the best of sporting content to
the Indian sports fans across genres and this acquisition firmly reiterates our
constant endeavor in this direction. This acquisition enables us to expand our
content in MMA fighting and we think this property will get a lot of traction
with fight fans across the country. We will soon start a high decibel marketing
campaign across our entire network leveraging top fighters of the league and
Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt to build up to the season launch.” 
Raj Kundra, Founder Chairman, Super Fight League, said, “The broadcast tie-up
with ESPN STAR Sports will provide a major boost to our efforts to promote this
property across South Asia. We are very enthused with the response that SFL has
been able to generate in its very first year of operation. The league is today
ranked amongst the top 5 MMA leagues in the world.  
As a result, we have seen a lot of interest from leading MMA fighters to compete
in SFL season 2. Good quality fighters from India and abroad will help the
league reach new highs. We are also expanding in a big way. The new season will
see 11 title belts on offer, up from 5 title belts in the first edition. Male
participants will fight it out across 8 weight categories from bantamweight to
heavyweight while the ladies' section will see action in 3 weight categories
from flyweight to featherweight.” 
Sanjay Dutt, Co-Founder, Super Fight League, commented, “SFL is about real
heroes, real fight, real action. SFL fights are also intense where one good move
can help an underdog come up triumphant over an established champion. One has to
be alert as there are no second chances here. I get inspired when I see these
fighters prepare for action. The broadcast deal with ESPN STAR Sports will give
SFL a big boost especially riding on the success of the first year.” 
M C Mary Kom, Brand Ambassador, SFL, added, “People need to understand that it
is very difficult to be an MMA fighter. It is a full contact sport that allows
the use of both striking and grappling techniques, standing as well as when you
are on the ground. MMA includes Boxing, Wrestling, Brazilian Ji-Jitsu, Muay
Thai, Kickboxing, Karate, Judo and other styles. I get dazzled every time I see
actual MMA action in front of my eyes.”  
In the Bantamweight category for males, current title holder Anup Kumar has been
given the top ranking. In the Featherweight category, Bharat Khandare (current
title holder) tops the ranking. In Lightweight, Rajinder Singh (current title
holder) is ranked No.1. In Welterweight, Shyam Prasad (current title holder) is
at the top. In the new categories introduced this year, John Troyer has been
ranked highest in the Middleweight category. Goran Reljic is ranked second in
the Light heavyweight category. Daniel Amar Singh has been ranked highest in the
Heavyweight category. In the female section, Sanja Sucevic has been ranked
highest in the Flyweight category. In Bantamweight, Hanna Sillen has been given
the highest billing. In Featherweight, Puja Kadian is the favourite for the
title. 
SFL season 2 is set to kick-off in Mumbai on March 29 this year and will take
place every fortnight till March end 2014. For more information on all the
action, please logon to www.superfightleague.com. 
Media contact details 
Sameer Bajaj, Corporate Communications,
ESPN Software India Pvt. Ltd.,
+91 9811222700 
Supriya Gupta, Corporate Communications,
ESPN Software India Pvt. Ltd.,
+91 9899552515 
Monish Mazumdar,
IPAN H+K Strategies,
+91 9810542491 
Sukriti Kalra,
IPAN H+K Strategies,
+91 9910393262 
Contributed via: Bloomberg Publisher WEB Service 
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-0- Mar/14/2013 05:26 GMT