Robert Whittaker Forced Into Emergency Surgery From UFC 234 Injuries

Danny Woods
February 10, 2019

He later informed Okamoto that Whittaker would be going into surgery Saturday (North American time) to take care of the hernia.

Australia's UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has withdrawn from his championship defence against Kelvin Gastelum on Sunday at UFC 234 because of an abdominal injury.

UFC President Dana White later confirmed the 28-year-old would be undertaking surgery today.

It means the highly-anticipated No 1 contender match between Adesanya (15-0) and Brazilian legend Anderson Silva (34-8, 1nc) will now serve as the main event.

The new main event will be a three-round fight between Israel Adesanya and Anderson Silva.

A lightweight clash between Lando Vannata and Marcos Rosa Mariano will now move to the main card.

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Fighting out of Sydney, Whittaker is the UFC's first titleholder from Australia.

"Due to change in the main event, customers may request a full refund of their purchased tickets at the point of sale".

Silva, 43, broke into tears during the UFC 234 official weigh-in.

On Twitter, Gastelum also wished Whittaker well in his recovery. Whittaker won a brutal split decision - his second win over Romero in a year. Prior to that, he knocked out former middleweight champion Michael Bisping in November 2017.

The cancellation of the bout poses the question of whether or not Gastelum will get the first shot at Whittaker's belt when he returns from injury, with the victor of the fight between Adesanya and Silva guaranteed a title shot.

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