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I will defend my middleweight title, Adesanya assures fans


Israel Adesanya floored former champion Robert Whittaker when they met in Melbourne, Australia last October. He has vowed to defend his<br />middleweight title in Las Vegas in March Photo: AAP

• Pays tribute to Kobe Bryant

Nigerian-born New Zealand based UFC middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya says he would do everything possible to defend his title when he face Cuban MMA fighter, Yoel Romero at UFC 248 in Las Vegas on March 7.

Adesanya, a native of Odogbolu, Ogun State, is undefeated in 18 fights till date. He recorded seven victories in the UFC, including a three-fight run that saw him defeat the legendary Brazilian Anderson Silva, won the interim middleweight title in a war with Kelvin Gastelum and knocked out Robert Whittaker to become undisputed middleweight champion in Melbourne, Australia last year.

Speaking with The Guardian from his training camp in Auckland, New Zealand, yesterday, ‘The Last Stylebender,’ as Adesanya is called by his fans, said that he would do everything possible to defend his title.


Adesanya revealed that he had spent five weeks inside the Out of City Kickboxing gymnasium in Auckland saying: “I won’t give my opponent any breathing space inside the ring in Las Vegas. I have to prepare well.”

The Cuban, Yoel Romero, is challenging Adesanya for the UFC middleweight title.“I want to get to the top in my MMA fighting career and the fight in Las Vegas in March is just one of them. I will always thrill my fans when the opportunity comes,” he stated.

Adesanya has proven himself as an accomplished kickboxer since he turned his striking skills into an elite MMA career a few years ago. He is a known fighter to Australian fans following his epic bouts with former champion Robert Whittaker, whom he blitzed in just two rounds last October to claim the UFC middleweight title.

Adesanya has fought seven times in the UFC in the last two years, and is willing to enter the cage as many as four times this year (2020).With his captivating striking style and charisma, Adesanya could well become one of the sport’s biggest stars if he wins the battle of Las Vegas on March 7.

His opponent, Romero is an Olympic silver medalist wrestler who has been a longtime contender in the middleweight division. Though Romero has lost his last two fights, he remains one of the most feared men in the division.

Meanwhile, Adesanya has commented on the tragic death of basketball legend, Kobe Bryant, who was killed in a helicopter crash in California last Sunday morning, along with his daughter Gianna, and seven other passengers. He was 41.

Adesanya says he’s humbled to have drawn comparisons to Bryant and his mentality, as he discussed the impact that the basketball legend has had on him.“I don’t follow basketball, I just follow greatness, and just watching the way he played the game, watching the way he conducted himself, watching the way people spoke about him,” Adesanya said.


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