Alexander Volkanvoski revealed recently how he openly refused the opportunity to land an immediate title rematch with lightweight champion, Islam Makhachev, off the back of his UFC 284 title challenge loss in February, however, the featherweight titleholder plans to rematch the Russian before the close of 2023. 

Volkanovski, the current featherweight champion, is slated to headline UFC 290 during International Fight Week in July, taking on interim division gold holder, Yair Rodríguez in the pair’s title unification bout.

However, the New South Wales favorite suffered his first promotional loss earlier this year on home soil, dropping a close, back-and-forth unanimous decision loss to lightweight champion, Makhachev in the pair’s lightweight title fight. 

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Alexander Volkanovski confirmed he rejected an title rematch with Islam Makhachev

Revealing how he had been approached with the offer of an immediate rematch with Makhachev at an unspecified date, Alexander Volkanovski confirmed he rejected the clash in a bid to remain active, however, insists he will fight the former again before the end of this annum.

“I wanted to be active, I told you that,” Alexander Volkanovski said on his YouTube channel. “I was asked after the fight [with Islam Makhachev], do I want to wait around for the rematch, do i want to fight at featherweight, what do I wanna do? I don’t want to wait around. They [the UFC] said, ‘Do you want to wait around and the only thing is if you wait for that fight, that might not be until the end of the year.’ We don’t know when that fight is happening but it’s not looking like it’s gonna be anytime soon.”

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“I ain’t waiting,” Alexander Volkanovski explained. “I’d rather fight featherweight then do the rematch sometime at the end of the year, whenever it is. Whenever that fight can happen, that fight’s always gonna be there. I want to stay active and I told you I wanted to stay active and I wasn’t lying. This is proof of that.” (Transcribed by MMA Fighting)

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.