Sport Robert Whittaker to face Luke Rockhold in Perth, reports

08:51  08 december  2017
08:51  08 december  2017 Source:   sportingnews.com

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EARLIER: Robert Whittaker will face Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 in Perth in February, according to reports . MORE: Damien Brown targets UFC 221 fight with Gil Melendez | The story behind the greatest night of Cub Swanson's life.

EARLIER: Robert Whittaker will face Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 in Perth in February, according to reports . MORE: Damien Brown targets UFC 221 fight with Gil Melendez | The story behind the greatest night of Cub Swanson's life.

a man wearing a hat© Provided by Sportal com au

Robert Whittaker will face Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 in Perth in February, according to reports.

MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani reported the news first, saying the UFC is on the verge of booking the fight.

The pay per-view card will take place on February 10 at Perth Arena, in the company's first PPV show since UFC 193 in Melbourne in 2015.

It is unclear whether the fight will be for Whittaker's interim middleweight title, or if the UFC will strip Georges St-Pierre of his full title.

GSP won the belt in a third-round submission win over Michael Bisping in November, but has hinted he isn't interested in defending it. The Canadian veteran will also be sidelined for an undetermined amount of time with colitis.

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Former champion Luke Rockhold – whose upset loss to Michael Bisping in 2016 cost him the belt – will now face Cuban Yoel Romero for the interim title at Perth Arena on Rockhold (16-3) and Romero (12-2) are widely regarded as the two most dangerous middleweights not named Robert Whittaker .

10 at Perth Arena in Perth , Australia, and airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass. Instead, Whittaker will face Rockhold , a former titleholder who is coming off a second-round TKO of David Branch at UFC Fight Night 116 in September.

Whittaker won the interim belt with a unanimous decision win over Yoel Romero at UFC 213 in July.

With St-Pierre unlikely to fight at 185-pounds again, there has been speculation he will be stripped of the title, allowing Whittaker and Rockhold to fight for the unified middleweight belt.

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Just under one month out from UFC 221, middleweight champion Robert Whittaker is now out of his main event fight vs. former champ Luke Rockhold . ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported late Friday night that Whittaker withdrew due to an undisclosed injury

UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker was scheduled to defend his title against Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 on February 10 in Perth , Australia. Former middleweight champion, Luke Rockhold , will now face the #1 contender, Yoel Romero, for the UFC interim middleweight title.

Earlier in the week, Rockhold said he considers Whittaker the real middleweight champion and would enjoy a trip to Australia to fight for the belt.

“Obviously, Whittaker’s the real champ and I’m ready to fight him,” Rockhold said.

“If Georges were to stay it’d be laughable. I’d seek the fight (with GSP), but I know he’s not going to stay. Georges won’t fight me, he won’t fight anyone.

“Australia’s like my second home – I’ll have my own fanbase in Australia.

“I’m always down for some Aussie time. I’d gladly walk onto Australian soil and unfortunately, I might hurt a few of their feelings.”

Whittaker had been campaigning for a fight opposite St-Pierre in either Perth or Canada.

Two other fights have so far been announced for the Perth card, with light-heavyweight Tyson Pedro to take on Saparbek Safarov and bantamweight Ben Nguyen fighting Jussier Formiga.

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A 19-year-old man has been charged when his alleged attempt to evade police ended after he crashed into two other cars in Perth.The Ferndale teenager is accused of leading police on a 15-minute pursuit through Canning Vale, Huntingdale and Thornlie in Perth's south around 10pm on Saturday.

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