Australian Whittaker stimulates up for slow start and hyperextended knee to triumph final three contests against Romero
Australias Robert Whittaker won the UFC interim middleweight deed on Saturday night in Las Vegas, surging in the late rounds to earn a unanimous decision over Yoel Romero at UFC 213.
Whittaker( 20 -4) recovered from a hyperextended knee during the first round with a strong striking execution, peppering Cuban Romero( 12 -2) with punches and kicks over the final three rounds. He prevailed his eighth consecutive campaign, paying the succes 48 -4 7 on all three judges scorecards.
Its a moment Ive ever “ve been dreaming about”, Whittaker replied. My knee was certainly hurt. I injured it in camp, and Romeros kick determined it back weeks. I know that Romero will capitalise on any weakness he investigates, so I had to play it off. Thats just what champs are made of.
The main event of the UFCs traditional July showcase in its hometown was offset earlier in the working day when bantamweight champ Amanda Nunes was taken to infirmary. She was scratched from her second title defence against Valentina Shevchenko, who criticised the champs preparation for the bout.
Alistair Overeem too vanquished Fabricio Werdum by narrow majority decision in the third largest busines gratify of two veteran heavyweights, and former lightweight endorse Anthony Pettis also returned to the discord with a unanimous decision succes over Jim Miller.
Whittaker took advantage of his contests promotion to the main event by claiming the region in front of a pay-per-view audience. He earned the chance to fight for the full 185 -pound title held for the past time by Michael Bisping, who is injured. Bisping stepped into the enclosure afterward and congratulated Whittaker in his own irascible style.
The fact that youre standing there with a region on manufactures me sick, the Englishman announced, throwing his own region on the canvas. Take that region. Fight for it.
Romeros Olympic-level grappling knowledge remained Whittaker on the defensive for often of the first two rounds. Whittaker increased his striking yield while Romero sat back in the third largest and fourth. Whittaker too represented Romeros takedowns more adroitly.
Romero was cut on his left eyebrow while Whittaker had a murderou nose and mouth in the final round, which looked even until Romero slipped onto his back with 90 seconds left after failing to land air strikes. Whittaker hopped on top to rain down jolts to the final horn.
All three judges visualized the fight identically, scoring the first two rounds for Romero and the final three for Whittaker.
The 40 -year-old Romero was cordial after his eight-fight winning streak intent, praising his opponent.
Whittaker will get the chance to remove the interim nickname from his belt when Bisping returns from hurt, although women might not happen this year. The middleweight divide is currently in limbo since Bisping shockingly hit endorse Luke Rockhold last summer and then pushed old competitive Dan Henderson instead of Romero, Whittaker or another top contender.
Shevchenko showed up after being denied her long-awaited entitle film when Nunes fell ill in the hours before their rematch.
Shevchenko was frantic with Nunes, claiming the champions drastic weight slash was responsible for her illness. She too echoed UFC president Dana Whites statement that Nunes was medically cleared to fight, but declined to go from the hospital to the cage.
You cant am saying, I dont want to fight, Shevchenko alleged. I couldnt speculate at the very last moment that this would happen to me. Of trend I am disturbed I understand what she craved. She wanted to cut[ weight] in a very short time. You cannot do this. Our bodies necessity more time to recover.
Shevchenko was greeted with thunderous encourages when she was shown on the realms video committees before the main event.
Overeem( 43 -1 5) and Werdum( 21 -7- 1) finished a trilogy of pushes between two of “the worlds largest” achieved mixed martial artists of their generation. Werdum won their first join in the Pride promotion in 2006, and Overeem won their Strikeforce heavyweight rematch in 2011.
Overeem was slightly better during the first two rounds, and he survived the third after Werdum floored him with a knee to the head.
Pettis( 20 -6) returned to anatomy in his return to 155 pounds, predominating the veteran Miller with knack and push. Pettis lost his title belt in March 2015 to start a 1-4 skid that included a two-fight stint at featherweight, but he gazed sharp while engraving up Miller( 28 -1 0 ), who bled copiously.
Before the pay-per-view parcel of the card, heavyweight Travis Browne took his fourth consecutive loss in a second-round submission to 40 -year-old Russian grappler Aleksei Oleinik.
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