When Israel Adesanya emerged victorious in his fight against Calvin Gastelum at the key event of UFC 266 earlier this year, the rising superstar not only claimed the title of interim middleweight, but he also did a showdown with reigning champion Robert Whitaker. .
As the pair came together, conflicting title holders from Oceania began to look for opportunities to compete closer to home rather than the huge title unification clash in North America.
Three months after the paper was put together to fight the victory of Adesanya, the officer became official on Sunday, October 6, at the UFC 243 title at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Australia.
The event, which aired on a per-door view in North America on Saturday, October 8, is likely to capture the record as the most attended UFC event in history, with the promoter setting the end of the campaign at the EFC Stadium at UFC 193, knocking Holly Ronda Rousey into the world.
“UFC 3, which was at Etihad Stadium then, is now Marvel Stadium,” started Charismatic and engaging Adesnia, who has won six of his Octagon appearances and carries a perfect 17-0 record in the showdown with Whitaker this autumn. “I think I was in the nostrils and I remember the feeling of that yard. People outside of them had to headline the card and stack the card, and it was a great card, but now we’re stacking it with people on our own side and it shows you that it’s flourishing. ”
“That was one of my biggest focuses for the whole fight. This is us coming back to Australia, to a bigger venue,” added Whitaker, who was scheduled to defend his title against Gastelum at UFC 29 at Rod Laver Arena in February, only to be forced into the event. The day requires urgent surgery due to hernia and a twisted abdomen. “We have the opportunity to make UFC history and it is all kept in this part of the world.
“This is one of the most anticipated battles and I think this will be the biggest event in war sports for this part of the world, and I am really looking forward to developing the game after that, for the sport and more importantly for the athletes. ”
The February fight-off was the second time the New Zealand-born Australian champion was born in New Zealand, but was forced out of the main event of the Per-View show through a fight in Sydney. A year before his due date with Gastelum, Whitaker had to face Luke Rockhold for the middleweight title at UFC 221 in Perth, only to be forced out due to a serious illness.
That evening he turned into a party for several talented newcomers, including heavyweight Curtis Blades and Tai Tuivasa and current featherweight contender Alexander Volkanovsky, but the person who really stole the show and threw it into stardom was Adesonia.