Robert Whittaker Looks To Sean Strickland Matchup To Begin Path Back To Middleweight Gold

Former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has begun plans to once again achieve the UFC middleweight title, and those plans start with Sean Strickland.

Whittaker most recently took on Paulo Costa at UFC 298, and reigned victorious in a hard fought unanimous decision. This bout came on the heels of an upsetting loss to now champion Dricus Du Plessis back in July.

Making an appearance earlier this week on Submission Radio, Whittaker touched on his recent performance, as well as next steps for him in the UFC.

“I’m very happy obviously to get the W, to get the result you’ve been working towards,” Whittaker told Submission Radio. “It kind of validates all the changes and all the work you put in. I think I can fight better than that. I think technically I can fight better than that. But I think that’s as good as I could fight with the circumstances that day, right? So, one of my biggest focuses moving into this fight was just making sure I didn’t feel the way I did for the Dricus fight against Costa. And it was changing and doubling down on the intensity and the focus and the drive every session, every minute of a session, every week of training for months leading into this fight. And I’m very happy with that result.

(h/t MMAFighting)

In addition to naming the opponent he has in mind for his next Octagon showing, Whittaker also explained that he has his sights set on a particular location. Rumors have been swirling that the UFC could be making its return to Perth in August or September 2024. If that is the case, Whittaker expressed that he has a serious interest in competing on the card, evening stating that he ‘owes Australia a fight’.

All this being said, Whittaker did explain that he is not calling anybody out, just that this is the move that makes the most sense for him.

“Sean’s up there as well,” Whittaker said. “I think that’s a good direction. It’s moved me towards that goal that I’m looking for. Moves me in the right direction. So, I think that they’re the most logical choices moving forward though. The only thing I can kind of put down is the date I’m looking for. So, I hear on the grapevine that there’s a Perth card in August, perhaps. I would love to get on that, to run a show with that.”

“Don’t sound bite me saying ‘Rob wants Sean Strickland in August,’” Whittaker said. “That’s the logical move to make. I want to fight for the title, right? I understand that’s a bit of a long whatever at this point. And Sean doesn’t look like he’s tied up. So, it is the logical step. Sure. Yeah. Ah, you can sound bite me whatever [laughs].”

“Five rounds comes with a lot more work,” Whittaker said. “It’s not like I don’t want to do it, it’s just it’s a lot more work. But in saying that, five rounds also means that I’m most likely headlining it, and I would love that. I love that idea too. Because I think I owe Perth a fight. I owe Australia a fight. So, to be able to do that would be the bee’s knees, if you would. But Sean, he said it himself, all I do is blitz. So, I’m going to blitz him a lot. And yeah, see how that goes.”

(h/t MMAFighting)




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