Published: Sun, February 10, 2019
Culture&Arts | By Dora Pope

Middleweight champion Robert Whittaker ruled out for title defense fight

Middleweight champion Robert Whittaker ruled out for title defense fight

UFC 234 will proceed with Anderson Silva vs. Israel Adesanya as tonight's new three-round main event.

Robert Whittaker will have emergency surgery after pulling out of his middleweight title defence against Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 234.

Whittaker, who successfully weighed in on Friday, was experiencing pain in his abdomen late last evening and was immediately taken to the hospital where he was diagnosed.

The loss of Whittaker, who is on a nine-fight win streak, will certainly be a massive disappointment for many fans with UFC 234 tickets.

This is the second time Whittaker has been forced to withdraw from a scheduled title fight down under, after a range of injuries kept him from fighting Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 in Perth a year ago.

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UFC 234 takes place from Melbourne, Australia and the Rod Laver Arena.

Because his next fight against Yael Romero was a non-title bout after Romero missed weight, Whittaker still has yet to officially defend his belt a year into his status as middleweight champ. It's just the second time two winners of "The Ultimate Fighter" will meet for a UFC title. Lando Vannata and Marcos Mariano's lightweight matchup will also be elevated to co-main status.

Gastelum's manager has stated that he hopes Kelvin will fight the victor of Silva vs. Adesanya for the title in his next octagon appearance.

Your MW main event & a WAR in the making!

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