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Yoel Romero: UFC has confirmed I will fight Robert Whittaker for title, ‘maybe’ in July

Yoel Romero says he will definitely be fighting Robert Whittaker for the middleweight title in his next bout.

According to top contender Yoel Romero, the UFC has confirmed that he will be the first challenger to face Robert Whittaker for the middleweight title, and ‘Soldier of God’ expects the rematch to take place during international fight week in July.

“I don’t have an idea (of when),” Romero told host Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, per MMA Fighting’s Shaun Al-Shatti. “Maybe July? I don’t know when. I hear he’s sick, he’s feeling no good, he’s feeling very bad. I pray for him. I’m waiting. I’m waiting for him.”

Whittaker, who was crowned official middleweight champion after Georges St-Pierre relinquished the title last year, was originally set to defend his belt against Luke Rockhold at UFC 221. However, ‘The Reaper’ was forced to pull out due to injury and Romero stepped in as his replacement.

The Cuban-born talent went on to KO Rockhold in the third round, dropping the former champ with a monster overhand left and finishing him with a follow-up uppercut. Despite securing yet another highlight reel knockout, Romero was seen limping from the Octagon and feared he had suffered a broken leg.

It was confirmed later, however, that Romero’s injury stemmed from a deep bruise to his right shin.

“Thank you God, (the leg is) good,” Romero told Helwani.

Romero, who turns 41 in April, originally dropped a unanimous decision to Whittaker in a competitive five-round interim title bout last year, and hopes the rematch will take place in Miami, where there is a thriving Cuban community.

“Cuba will [go] crazy, Miami will [go] crazy,” he said. “Many people in the world will be so happy, it’ll [be] crazy, believe me.

“I’m very excited, I’m very happy.”

Expect the UFC to formally announce the championship rematch between Romero and Whittaker in the coming weeks.

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