According to the latest reports, Dricus Du Plessis is out of his much-awaited bout against Israel Adesanya at UFC 293, scheduled for September in Sydney, Australia. Ariel Helwani took to Twitter to announce the same. The South African will not be able to compete in the high-octane clash with a short turnaround. He will be replaced by Sean Strickland.
“It’s not quite official but pretty close at this point that Dricus Du Plessis will not be able to fight Israel Adesanya at UFC 293 on Sept. 9 in Sydney. He was banged up going into the Robert Whittaker fight, and that turnaround is just too soon, I’m told. If that ends up being the case, and Israel Adesanya stays on the card, which is his desire, it’ll be Adesanya x Sean Strickland for the middleweight title on 9/9,” Helwani wrote.
‘Strickland, you’re in. Let’s do ‘The Man Dance’ – Israel Adesanya
It was no surprise that Israel Adesanya was the first person to react to the turn of events. He made a video and posted it on his socials. He called out Du Plessis and challenged Strickland to do the ‘Man Dance’ with him in Sydney soon. In the video, he said Du Plessis was backing out due to an issue with his foot and slammed him for backing out. “I don’t even know how to start this, Dricus Du Pu*sy… You a bi*ch, that’s why you’re not taking this fight. Your foot’s sore… You’re out. Strickland, you’re in. Let’s do ‘The Man Dance.’ I’ll show you how to really dance,” Adesanya said.
The reef between Adesanya and Du Plessis tracks back to their faceoff in the aftermath of UFC 290. Their bout had severe racial undertones as Du Plessis made a few striking comments arguing that he was more African than Israel Adesanya, Kamaru Usman, and Francis Ngannou. Adesanya reclaimed his middleweight title beating Alex Pereira in his last game in UFC 287. At the same time, Strickland is riding on a two-match winning streak. The match-up is surely intriguing.