Israel “The Last Stylebender” Adesanya, 30, of Nigeria and New Zealand has been crowned as the new champion of the middleweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. The undefeated Nigerian-Kiwi mixed martial artist won in the main event of “UFC 243.”
Featuring 11 MMA bouts, the UFC held “UFC 243” at the Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Australia on October 5, 2019. In the main event of the evening, Adesanya, as the then interim UFC Middleweight Champion, challenged then reigning UFC Middleweight Champion Robert “The Reaper” Whittaker, 28, of Australia.
Marc Goddard served as the referee of the title bout. He put a stop to the contest after 3 minutes and 33 seconds in the second round when Adesanya knocked out Whittaker via punches.
Winning at “UFC 243” improved the professional MMA record of Adesanya to 18 wins and 0 loss. On the other hand, Whittaker now has 20 wins and 5 losses.
After dethroning Whittaker, Adesanya said that the next opponent he wanted to fight was Paulo Henrique “Borrachinha” Costa, 28, of Brazil. The newly crowned UFC Middleweight Champion referred to the Brazilian MMA fighter as a Ricky Martin wannabe.
“You know who’s next,” Adesanya said. “I have a heavy Ricky Martin wannabe next, Borrachinha. This is my Octagon.”
“I’m going to smash him,” Adesanya said of Costa. “I want to rearrange his face.”
Born on July 22, 1982 in Lagos, Nigeria, Adesanya was 13 years old when he moved to Rotorua, New Zealand. He attended Rotorua Boys’ High School.
When Adesanya was 21, he moved to Auckland, New Zealand. As a professional boxer, he has 5 wins and 1 loss.
As a professional kickboxer, Adesanya has 75 wins and 5 losses. He made his professional MMA debut on March 24, 2012 and his UFC debut on February 11, 2018 at “UFC 221” in Perth, Australia where he knocked out Rob “Razor” Wilkinson, 24, of Australia.
On April 14, 2018, Adesanya earned his second UFC win by beating Marvin Vettori, 26, of Italy via split decision at “UFC on Fox 29” in Glendale, Arizona, United States. The Nigerian-Kiwi fighter earned the Performance of the Night bonus at “UFC 230” on November 3, 2018 in New York City, New York, USA where he knocked out Derek “The Gatekeeper” Brunson, 35, of the U.S.
On February 10, 2019, Adesanya defeated Anderson “The Spider” Silva, 44, of Brazil via unanimous decision at “UFC 234” in Melbourne. The two won Fight of the Night.
On April 13, 2019, Adesanya became the interim UFC Middleweight Champion by defeating Kelvin Gastelum, 27, of the U.S. via unanimous decision at “UFC 236” in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Meanwhile, watch the complete “UFC 243” post-fight press conference here: