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Ilima-Lei Macfarlane to headline Bellator’s debut in Hawaii vs. Valerie Letourneau

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Ilima-Lei Macfarlane will defend her flyweight title on home soil when she fights Valerie Letourneau in the main event of an upcoming Bellator show in Honolulu
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Ilima-Lei Macfarlane is bringing a title fight back to the islands.

MMA Fighting confirmed with officials that the flyweight champion will defend her belt against Valerie Letourneau in the main event of Bellator’s first visit to Hawaii, which is set to take place on Dec. 15 at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center in Honolulu.

The bout was first reported by KHON2. An official announcement is expected to be made shortly.

The event will air live on the DAZN streaming service.

Macfarlane, 28, will be seeking her second championship defense after becoming Bellator’s inaugural champion at 125 pounds last November. The Honolulu native is 8-0 as a pro, with her last three wins all coming by way of submission. In her most recent outing, she defeated Alejandra Lara with a third-round armbar at Bellator 201 in June.

This will be the second major title opportunity for Letourneau (10-6), who previously challenged Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the UFC strawweight championship, losing that fight by unanimous decision. The 35-year-old Canadian debuted with Bellator last December, making the move to 125 pounds, and rattled off back-to-back unanimous decision wins over Kate Jackson and Kristina Williams.

An opening round Bellator Welterweight World Grand Prix bout between Ed Ruth (6-0) and Neiman Gracie (8-0) is also expected to take place on the Dec. 15 card. This bout was first reported by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.