Australian UFC champion, Robert Whittaker, had surgery on his thumb after returning to Sydney from his split decision victory over Cuban Yoel Romero in Chicago last month. After reports, it looks like he will be out of action for longer than most initially thought.
After breaking his thumb in the first round against Romero, Whittaker astonishingly won the bout to retain his middleweight championship in Las Vegas. Speaking to ESPN, Whittaker said that his hand was still somewhat stiff and would need to wait until the surgery had healed before being able to get back to rehabilitating his hand.
With the estimated return date being around February of 2019, it leaves open the possibility of Whittaker being able to defend his title in Australia, assuming that the timeline falls into place. He is scheduled to face American Kelvin Gastelum (15-3) when he is fit and ready to go, and the chance for Whittaker to defend his title in his home country would be more than fitting, considering how his career has taken off.
Whittaker’s latest win saw his record move to 20-4, with a streak of nine consecutive victories. His split-decision win against Romero was overshadowed by the injury to his right hand. He revealed to UFC reporter Ariel Helwani that he also had ligament damage in his left hand during the fight, but the right hand took away the attention from the other.
Main Image – USA Today