Robert Whittaker: “I still want to fight Marvin Vettori"

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Robert Whittaker: “I still want to fight Marvin Vettori"

Robert Whittaker surprised many when he revealed that he would not fight against Vettori. The reason was an injury, and much more information, Whittaker gives us now: "It was Singapore. It was Vettori. I was excited to just get back in there and get back to work, and I jumped straight back into training.

I got back in the gym that week and I just felt pain. I wasn’t performing the way I wanted it to, and I wasn’t comfortable with the way I was able to move and everything and work on it”. - he said, as quoted by mmajunkie He wanted a fight only in which he would be maximally ready.

“It’s not like Vettori’s a chump,” Whittaker said. “I would think it’s like the ultimate show of respect, is that I don’t want to fight Vettori at anything less than 100 percent. He’s only lost to the same dudes that I have.

Dude – he’s up the top of the food chain for a reason, and I need to respect that and take that serious”.

Whittaker on Vettori

His wish is still Vettori, and we'll see if that comes true. “I still want to fight Vettori,” Whittaker said.

“I think he’s a great fight, and I still want that fight to happen. I just need a little bit more time. But like I was saying, the week I pulled out, it was just one of those things, I hadn’t been able to train properly and the injury still wasn’t healed.

And a big thing is, I didn’t get to where I am today half-assing things – you know, not making the smart decisions. So if for me pushing it back a couple of months to make sure I’m at 100 percent so Vettori gets my 100 percent best is what I need to do, then it’s what I need to do.

And let me say, the MMA community can sometimes can be bloody brutal. There’s no surgery. I just need a strengthening block to really just finish up. And the overarching thing is – because I did all the rehab that I could – the overarching thing that is needed is time.

It’s just one of those things, and I ran out of time. Hopefully Vettori hangs around and enjoys some food or something like that, if we can reschedule in a couple of months from now. Because I like that fight, and I want to fight him. I think he’s owed that fight. But you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do”.