Australia goes ‘electric’ as Perth headlines Volkanovski vs Makhachev - Hindustan Times
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You don't just hear it, you feel it in your soul: Australia goes ‘electric’ as Perth headlines Volkanovski vs Makhachev

Feb 12, 2023 12:08 AM IST

The UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev will put his title on the line against current featherweight champion and local boy Alexander Volkanovski in a blockbuster champion vs champion main event fight at UFC 284.

The Australian cricket team led by Pat Cummins started their tour to India on a rough note, losing the first Test in Nagpur by an innings and 132 runs on Saturday. Despite the mauling, sports enthusiasts in Australia, particularly the MMA fans, will have a big reason to celebrate on Sunday as the country headlines the biggest UFC event this year so far in Perth, which will see the best collide against the best.

UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev defends his title against featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 284 in Perth(Getty)
UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev defends his title against featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 284 in Perth(Getty)

The UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev will put his title on the line against current featherweight champion and local boy Alexander Volkanovski in a blockbuster champion vs champion main event fight at UFC 284. This is also the first time Makhachev will be seen defending his belt, having won the vacant title against Charles Oliveira in October last year.

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“The Aussie UFC fans are electric. When you make that walk in front Aussie fans, you feel it, you don't just hear it, you feel it in your soul,” said Jimmy Crute, Australian MMA fighter, during an interaction with hindustantimes.com over a zoom call.

Crute has trained alongside Volkanovski in the past and is confident that the featherweight champion will walkout with a win against Makhachev, who will be without his training partner and UFC legend Khabib Nurmagomedov at the RAC Arena. “Obviously going to go with Volk (Alexander Volkanovski). And that's not just because I'm biased. I really do believe that Volk's got the style to really get the upset and shock the world. It is a tough fight. But I'm going to back Volk all the way,” he said.

Meanwhile, Crute too will be seen in action at the event against Alonzo Menifield, which marks his return to the Octagon after a long gap of over a year due to an ACL injury. "I'm very excited. It's been a long time. It's been 13 months since my last fight. And to get back in the Octagon in front of a home country crowd is exciting," said the Australian.

When asked about the recovery process, Crute admitted that it did come with bit of a mental fatigue but asserts he's returning as a “stronger fighter”.

“I might have had a really tough year last year. And I had to fight a lot of mental battles to get back here today. But when I look back, I wouldn't change that thing. I think injuries happen for a reason. And I believe I'm a stronger fighter now because of that,” said Crute.

Watch the LIVE coverage of UFC 284 on Sony Sports Ten 2 (English), Sony Sports Ten 3 (Hindi) & Sony Sports Ten 4 (Tamil & Telugu) channels at 8:30 am IST on 12th February 2023.

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