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The championship was first introduced on April 5, 2013 at WrestleMania Axxess. It was announced at the May 30, 2013 tapings (broadcast on the June 5 episode) of WWE NXT, by Stephanie McMahon that there would be a tournament, featuring four developmental female talents and four female talents from the main roster competing to be crowned as the inaugural NXT Women's Champion in a knockout system format. The first NXT Women's Champion was crowned on June 20, 2013, with Paige defeating Emma in the tournament finals.