Robert Whittaker (20-5 MMA, 11-3 UFC) returns to the octagon to face Darren Till (18-2-1 MMA, 6-2-1 UFC). The bout is scheduled to take place on July 25 at the UFC’s Fight Island facility located on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.
Whittaker last appeared in the Octagon in October 2019 against Israel Adesanya at UFC 243 in Australia, where he lost his middleweight title via KO in round 2. Whittaker was originally scheduled to return to action in March 2020 against Jared Cannonier at UFC 248. In January 2020, Whittaker announced that he would not be competing at UFC 248. In late April 2020, Whittaker revealed that he withdrew from UFC 248 and training altogether due to burnout and took a hiatus from the sport to rejuvenate himself.
Darren Till is a former Welterweight who moved up a weight class (like Whittaker). This will be Till’s second fight at Middleweight in the UFC. Till debuted as a middleweight in the UFC in November 2019 at UFC 244 against former middleweight contender Kelvin Gastelum (15-5-1 MMA, 10-5-1 UFC). Till won the bout via a split decision making him 1-0 as a UFC middleweight.
Whittaker started his career in the UFC as a welterweight, winning The Ultimate Fighter: The Smashes in 2012. Whittaker went 3-2 as a UFC welterweight before debuting as a middleweight in 2014 against Clint Hester. Whittaker won the UFC interim middleweight title in July of 2017 against Yoel Romero. Whittaker was promoted to undisputed middleweight champion in December of 2017 after Georges St-Pierre vacated the UFC middleweight title. Prior to losing his title, Whittaker had amassed a nine-fight win streak, which included notable wins over Yoel Romero (twice), Ronaldo Jacare Souza, and Uriah Hall.
Till started his career in non-UFC promotions as a middleweight. He eventually joined the UFC in 2015 as a welterweight and went 5-2-1. His first loss was against (then) champion Tyron Woodley at 228 where he was submitted in round 2. Till’s second loss was against Jorge Masvidal at UFC on ESPN +5 in London where he was violently knocked out in round 2. Till holds notable wins over Stephen Thompson and Donald Cerrone at welterweight and Kelvin Gastelum at middleweight.
Both Whittaker and Till are 6 feet tall. Till has a slight reach advantage, with a 74.5-inch reach as compared to Whittaker’s 73.5-inch reach.
Whittaker stands 6’ tall and has a 73.5-inch reach. Till also stands 6’ tall and has a slightly longer reach – 74.5 inches. Whittaker is the older of the two at 29 years of age compared to 27 years for Till.
Whittaker and Till were originally set to fight on 15th August 2020 in Dublin. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the fight has been moved forward led to July 25 at the UFC’s Fight Island facility.