During a Tuesday UFC press conference in Japan, middleweight Yoshihiro Akiyama announced that he’d be fighting Wanderlei Silva early next year, likely in February at UFC 109 n Las Vegas or UFC 110 in Sydney, Australia.
The matchup, originally rumored for UFC 108 in January, would be featured on the UFC 109 card or could potentially headline the UFC’s Australian debut.
Akiyama (13-1), who is unbeaten since a 2005 loss to Jerome LeBanner, made his UFC debut in July with a unanimous decision victory over Alan Belcher at UFC 100. “Sexyama,” whose notable wins include Denis Kang and Melvin Manhoef, won the K-1 HERO’s Light Heavyweight Tournament in 2006 and recently picked up back-to-back wins in DREAM.
Silva (32-10-1), a former PRIDE champion, will be returning to the Octagon for the first time since undergoing surgery on his face to remove scar tissue and will also be making his debut at 185-pounds against Akiyama.”The Axe Murderer” has lost five of his past six fights, defeating Keith Jardine via first-round knockout last May while suffering losses to the likes of Chuck Liddell, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, and most-recently Rich Franklin in June.
Pictured: Wanderlei Silva
HT: Tony Loiseleur