Former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has released his first statement since pulling out of his fight with Jared Cannonier.
Whittaker was set to meet Cannonier at UFC 248 on March 7 in Las Vegas. However, it was reported earlier this week that “The Reaper” was pulling out due to undisclosed personal reasons.
It is the third fight Whittaker has pulled out from since the start of 2018. However, the previous two were due to injury. This time, it appears Whittaker simply needs more time to reset as he posted on social media:
“I’m sorry to all my friends, supporters and family for not being able to fight in March,” Whittaker wrote. “A lot has happened over the 12 last months and I need to take some time now to be with my family, slow things down and to refocus.
“Sorry to everyone again but I’ll be back. The best is yet to come.”
There is no doubt that Whittaker suffered a tough past 12 months. He was set to defend his title against Kelvin Gastelum in February last year only to pull out after the weigh-ins due to abdominal pain.
He then headlined UFC 243 in his native Australia in October but would get outclassed by Israel Adesanya, who knocked him out in the second round to become the new middleweight king.
Hopefully, Whittaker is fully focused when he eventually makes his return to the Octagon.
What do you make of Whittaker’s response?