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White confirms Adesanya title rematch

UFC boss Dana White has confirmed that Nigerian-born New Zealander, Israel Adesanya, will be given a rematch against Sean Strickland after losing his middleweight belt to the American on Sunday morning at the Qudos Arena in Sydney, Australia.

Strickland produced a major upset in the main event of UFC 293 by winning a unanimous decision against Adesanya. The win goes down as one of the biggest upsets in MMA history, as Strickland was a huge underdog heading into the fight, with fans and pundits tipping ‘Stylebender’ to beat him with ease.

Adesanya will have the chance to avenge the defeat and win back his middleweight world title as White confirmed a second fight between the pair will likely be made next.

“I think you do the rematch, absolutely. The rematch is interesting, only Israel knows the answers to these questions, and I’m looking forward to hearing it,” White said on Sunday while addressing how poorly Adesanya fought.

“How f****ng crazy is this game? What do I always say, never judge a fight until it happens? You never know what the hell is going to happen in these bats*** nutty sport. Israel looked like he was in slow motion, and he couldn’t get off, he was very stiff tonight and looked slow. Some days you wake up, and it’s just not there, he looked bone dry tonight (Sunday).”

Strickland left the octagon without a mark on his face, whilst Adesanya suffered a swollen eye and bloodied lip as a result of his loss. Strickland was surprised at how easy the fight ended up being, and he admitted to wrestling for most of his training camp despite not attempting a single takedown against Adesanya.

Adesanya was expected to fight Dricus Du Plessis at the Sydney event, but Strickland was drafted in as a last-minute opponent. Strickland was unfazed when asked about his next title challenger, as he welcomed a rematch with Adesanya, despite his win against the Nigerian-born Kiwi being one-sided.

“If I have learned anything about the UFC, it’s since when do you have an f****ng choice about who you’re fighting? The UFC never comes up here and says, ‘Hey Sean, would you like to fight this guy or this guy?’ The UFC says, ‘Hey, you’re fighting this guy’. At the end of the day, I’m the champion, so line them up, and I’ll knock them down or get knocked down,” the American said.

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