Wanderlei Silva, in a video posted to his official YouTube channel on Thursday night, confirmed his next fight would be at the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s debut in Australia.
He will face Yoshihiro Akiyama at UFC 111 when the promotion lands at the Acer Arena in Sydney. Akiyama first mentioned the bout at a recent press conference in Japan touting the UFC’s new “Undisputed” video game.
“I am so happy because it is the first event there,” said Silva with a huge smile across his face. “This is a great honor for me because I fight in the main event in Cologne, Germany, in the first event there, and I’m gonna fight in the first event in Australia.”
Silva (32-10-1) hasn’t fought since Germany in June, where he lost a unanimous decision in a 195-pound catchweight to Rich Franklin. Accruing a 1-3 record since joining the ranks of the UFC, the bout with Akiyama will be Silva’s first at 185 pounds, a move that will put him on a more level playing field with his opposition.
Considered one of the Top 10 fighters in the middleweight division, Akiyama (13-1; 2 no contests) will be making his second appearance for the UFC. He debuted in the Octagon at UFC 100 with a split decision win over Alan Belcher.