A British-Iranian amateur female MMA fighter died after suffering brain injuries from fighting in a local UK promotion on Saturday.
Saeideh "Sai" Aletaha was left in a critical condition following her bout on Fast and Furious 19 in Southampton, England, and succumbed to her injuries.
The 26-year-old engineer, who fought out of the Lookborai and Exile gyms specialising in Muay Thai and kick-boxing, lost her bout and was attended to by ringside doctors, according to the promotion.
"Following the show Saturday we regret to announce that following one of our matches … Sai Aletaha … unfortunately suffered an injury leaving her in a critical state that she tragically has not recovered from," the Fast and Furious Series said in a Facebook post.
"All competitors get in prepared that they may be injured and this is something not expected to happen 99.9 (per cent) of the time. But, it can and in this we make the environment as safe as possible with pre- and post-medicals from a doctor, and full medical cover throughout with doctors, paramedics and ambulances on site alongside our experience team of staff with numerous first-aiders, safety is not something ever skimped on in any of our 19 shows."
Aletaha was described by her teammates as a dedicated athlete and the Lookborai gym is hit hard by her death.
"Saeideh Aletaha was a lovely character with a beautiful soul," the gym said in a Facebook post. "Her dedication to the sport was 110 (per cent), travelling miles every day just to train.
"She found her place with us just a few months ago but has become a part of the family and will be sorely missed.
"The news comes as a devastating blow to us all at the gym and the whole community. Our thoughts and (prayers) go out of her family," it added.
The BBC reported that Aletaha was taken to Southampton General Hospital and that local police have launched an investigation into the night's events.
In September, former Bellator competitor Katy Collins died aged 32 following complications after suffering a brain aneurysm.
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