UFC 234 pay-per-view guide: Start time, card, how to watch

Cristina Cross
February 10, 2019

Australia's UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has withdrawn from his championship defence against Kelvin Gastelum on Sunday at UFC 234 because of an abdominal injury.

"He was taken to hospital and diagnosed with a hernia", ESPN reporter Brett Okamoto revealed.

Whittaker was set to defend his title for the first time since becoming interim champion at UFC 213.

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According to a report by ESPN, Whittaker suffered a hernia in his abdomen and could not be cleared to compete.

UFC 234 will move forward with Israel Adesanya vs. Anderson Silva taking over the headlining slot.

What was your reaction to the news that Robert Whittaker had been forced out of the UFC 234 main event with an injury?

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Despite being elevated to the main event, Adesanya's bout will remain a three-round fight. The Brazilian will take on a fighter 14 years his junior in Adesanya, who is sixth in the UFC middleweight rankings and 15-0 in his MMA career.

For all the good luck that the UFC had in keeping fights scheduled through January, February is not starting off the same way. Whittaker was forced into emergency surgery while UFC 234 lost its hometown hero for the second straight attempt on Australian land.

Extra weight was added to the Adesanya-Silva fight when UFC president Dana White announced on Friday that it would be for the No.1 middleweight contender spot.

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