Khamzat Chimaev reportedly suffering from a severe case of food poisoning: ‘He wouldn’t be able to fight’

Khamzat Chimaev reportedly suffering from a severe case of food poisoning: 'He wouldn't be able to fight'

Khamzat Chimaev’s friend and fellow fighter Abdul-Aziz Abdulvakhabov offered some insight into the illness that forced ‘Borz’ out of his scrap with Robert Whittaker in Saudi Arabia.

On June 22, Chimaev was scheduled for a high-stakes middleweight clash with the former champion, the winner likely setting themselves up for a shot at the 185-pound crown in late 2024/early 2025. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case after Chimaev became “violently ill,” forcing him to bow out of the bout.

Khamzat Chimaev

During a recent interview with Red Corner MMA, Abdulvakhabov revealed that the illness was food poisoning, though he stressed that he had not spoken to Chimaev directly and was informed by mutual friends of theirs.

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Khamzat Chimaev

“Food poisoning is always dangerous,” Abdulvakhabov said in a translated interview. “Accepting a fight with food poisoning, [Khamzat] knew his state, [knew] that he wouldn’t be able to fight. That’s why he called it off.”

Ikram Aliskerov steps in to replace Khamzat Chimaev in Saudi Arabia

Instead of fighting Chimaev inside Kingdom Arena, Robert Whittaker will now go toe-to-toe with Ikram Aliskerov who will make his third walk to the Octagon in Riyadh. Aliskerov is sitting on a seven-fight win streak dating back to 2019.


After securing a first-round submission victory over Mário Sousa on a 2022 episode of Dana White’s Contender Series, Aliskerov has earned a pair of quick finishes against Phil Hawes and Warlley Alves. His fight against ‘The Reaper’ will be his first appearance of 2024.

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It’s unclear if Whittaker will still secure himself a title opportunity with a win at UFC Saudi Arabia. Much of that may depend on how things play out when Dricus Du Plessis defends the middleweight crown against former two-time titleholder Israel Adesanya.

Their clash is rumored to headline UFC 305 on August 18 when the promotion heads back to Perth, Australia.

Israel Adesanya