The much-awaited title unification clash between Robert Whittaker and Israel Adesanya looks like it will no longer take place in Australia.
Whittaker and Adesanya are slated to unify the middleweight titles in what has been deemed the biggest Australasian fight in history. It was reported in April that the clash was set for UFC 243, which would take place October 5 at the Bankwest Stadium in Sydney.
The Daily Telegraph, however, reports that it will now be moved to Las Vegas. The reason being the event would clash with NRL grand final that takes place in Sydney as well. Whittaker’s agent Titus Day also confirmed to The Daily Telegraph that the move to Las Vegas was “extremely likely.”
Newshub, however, adds that the UFC is not concerned with the clash. Instead, they want to appease its North American pay-per-view (PPV) audience.
It comes as a big blow for MMA fans in Australia. Whittaker, of course, is a New Zealand-born Aussie, while Adesanya moved to New Zealand as a teenager. An event headlined by the duo would have undoubtedly been a huge success and a monumental moment for the sport in that region. For now, at least, nothing has been confirmed as of this writing.