A new WWE Women’s Championship title belt was unveiled and presented to Asuka during Friday’s episode of SmackDown.
The new title, which replaces the Raw Women’s Championship, was presented by Adam Pearce.
It is very similar to the belt that it is replacing, with a white strap and the familiar central WWE logo. However, gone is the red backplate, which is now gold.
Despite not being referred to as such, it bears the words “Women’s Undisputed Champion.”
In design, it appears to be a companion to Roman Reigns’ Undisputed WWE Universal Championship, which was introduced last week.
As is customary, an official replica was immediately available for preorder on the WWE online store.
The presentation was interrupted by a returning Charlotte Flair, who challenged Asuka for the new title.
The title belt that Asuka held until Friday dates to April 3rd, 2016, when it was first unveiled as the WWE Women’s Championship.
It replaced the WWE Divas Championship, which was retired.
The inaugural holder of the belt was Charlotte, who won the title at WrestleMania 32 after defeating Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks in a triple-threat match.
However, in July 2016, a Raw/SmackDown brand split was instituted, and the title was renamed the WWE Raw Women’s Championship, although the belt itself remained physically unchanged.
A near-identical title with a blue backplate was introduced at that time as the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship.
The current holder of that title is Rhea Ripley. It seems certain that it will also be replaced and renamed.
A full report on SmackDown by John Kleinchester will be published shortly after the show concludes.