Robert Whittaker addresses Yoel Romero on Twitter after UFC 221

ROBERT Whittaker will once again have to climb a Cuban mountain after Yoel Romero demolished Luke Rockhold in the main event of UFC 221 to set up a rematch with the world middleweight champion.

If you haven't already heard, the Main Event is now a catchweight fight after Yoel Romero missed weight by two-pounds.

There certainly were some hard impacts during the early stages of the fight as Rockhold landed several hard low kicks that Romero appeared to check, though at the time it seemed as if Rockhold had come off second best as he was left bleeding from his shin. "I think we've got a few factors that are going to allow us for some time, and first and foremost, it's that Rob can't really fight for a few months, so there's a bit of time to figure out what happens in the middleweight division".

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Though it might sound counterintuitive to award a title shot to an athlete that failed to make weight, Romero does have at least somewhat of an excuse, having taken the Rockhold fight on short notice.

A little over a minute and a half into the third, Romero manoeuvred Rockhold toward the fence with his feet and crept closer behind a double jab before firing an overhand left. However and injury forced Whittaker out and Romero stepped in for an interim title fight. Rockhold is a long fighter with very good striking and solid grappling. Rockhold was reportedly awarded 30% of Romero's purse which is said to have totalled about $100,000.

Romero is an incredible fighter and his 9-2 record with eight finishes in the UFC is remarkable. Romero was originally scheduled to face David Branch at UFC on Fox 28 in Orlando, Fla., on February 24 before he accepted the fight against Rockhold.

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Fight of the Night honors went to Jake Matthews and Li Jingliang, who battle the full three rounds of their main card bout.

Round two began with Romero more aggressive.

Romero had the breakthrough moment when he jumped forward with a big right followed by a huge left that sent Rockhold crushing to the canvas, before a left hand on the floor left Rockhold, cold. All the UFC has to do is show the replay of him knocking out Rockhold to get fans interested.

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  • Jill Young