Nigeria-born Israel Adesanya extended his perfect record to 18-0 as he defeated Robert Whittaker in stunning fashion to become the new undisputed UFC Middleweight champion, just 18 months after his debut, in Melbourne on Sunday.
The fight took place at the Marvel Stadium where there were nearly 60,000 fans present, including Adesanya’s parents. Adesanya, 30, came into the arena performing an acrobatic dance routine, and needed just three minutes and 33 seconds of the second round to knock-out Whittaker.
Former kickboxing star Adesanya burst onto the global MMA scene last year after arriving with a perfect 11-0 record. ‘The Last Stylebender’ then went on to record six successive wins, before his victory over Kelvin Gastelum in April saw him become the interim middleweight title holder.
On the biggest stage of his career, Adesanya stepped up and delivered an awesome performance to seal his rise to being world champion.
“I was in the nosebleeds, Now I made his nose bleed. He threw everything we expected. We had everything from his Plan A, Plan B, Plan C. We had everything up to Plan Z,” Adesanya told UFC commentator Jon Anik in his post-fight interview.
Adesanya’s first test as undisputed middleweight champion looks set to come against Brazilian contender Paulo Costa.