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‘It felt like a bad dream’: Israel Adesanya recalls shock UFC defeat to Strickland


ISRAEL Adesanya has expressed his frustration at losing his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) title to Sean Strickland, describing the defeat as a ‘bad dream’.

The Nigerian mixed martial arts star was beaten by the American underdog in Australia on September 9 in one of the biggest upsets in UFC history.

Strickland stunned the MMA world with the convincing victory via unanimous decision as all three judges scored it 49-46 in his favour after he knocked down Adesanya in the first round.

Recalling the fight on his YouTube channel, Adesanya said it was ‘like a bad dream’.

“One of those where you, not even a nightmare. A nightmare is like, ‘Oh s***. F***.’ A nightmare, you’re scared.
‘I was just like, you try to hit the guy, and it just felt like noodle arms. Like, ‘What the f***.’ It just felt like a bad dream,” the 34-year-old said.

“Feeling it and watching it were completely different. I called Eugene (Bareman) right after and we talked and the same thing. We’re quietly confident.

“I just wasn’t able to get my rhythm because of his pressure.”

Adesanya, who has dual Nigerian and New Zealand nationality, admitted that whatever he tried did not work against Strickland as he suffered his third UFC defeat.

“He was right there constantly. Whenever I was setting him up, because he was right there, his coach would help him out, and I would be like, ‘Fuck’,” he added.

‘Good game plan from them, but also for me, I wasn’t able to adjust on the fly.

“It was his night. I was his night and yeah, he got it done. I made another dream come true.”



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