UFC 234: Robert Whittaker RULED OUT of title defense against Kelvin Gastelum with hernia

UFC 234: Robert Whittaker RULED OUT of title defense against Kelvin Gastelum with hernia
Australian middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has been ruled out of his title defense main event fight at UFC 234 in Melbourne against American contender Kelvin Gastelum after suffering a hernia.

Whittaker was due to take on Gastelum in an eagerly-awaited match-up at the top of the bill on home soil at Rod Laver Arena on Sunday local time.

But the bout is now off after Whittaker was diagnosed with a hernia in his abdomen overnight, just hours before he was due to step into the Octagon.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported the news, citing UFC chief Dana White.

He later said Whittaker would be undergoing surgery on Sunday for the problem.

It means the no less anticipated co-main event between Israel 'The Last Stylebender' Adesanya and Brazilian legend Anderson Silva will top proceedings Down Under.

Also on rt.com Weepy weigh-in: Anderson Silva and Israel Adesanya choke up ahead of epic clash at UFC 234 (VIDEO)

The blow for Whittaker, 28, is the latest to come in Australia after he was forced out of a title defense against Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 in Perth last January, also through injury.