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Dana White explains Kelvin Gastelum booking despite admitting he pushed Darren Till ‘too soon’

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UFC president Dana White has explained why Darren Till will debut at middleweight against top contender Kelvin Gastelum.

MMA: UFC 228=Woodley vs Till Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

UFC president Dana White has justified booking Darren Till to face former interim middleweight title challenger Kelvin Gastelum in the Brit’s debut at 185-pounds.

It was announced earlier this week that Till would face number-four ranked middleweight Gastelum at UFC 244 in November. Till (17-2-1) enters the fight on the back of consecutive losses at welterweight against Tyron Woodley and Jorge Masvidal.

White spoke to MMA Fighting earlier this week about the decision to match Till up against Gastelum.

“We did [talk to him about it], he said ‘that’s the fight I want’. We went to him and said ‘are you sure this is the fight you want?’,” White said. “He’s moving up, are you sure Gastelum is the fight [you want]?

“He says that’s the fight I want. Love it.”

Talking back in June a couple of months after Till’s KO loss to Masvidal, White admitted the UFC pushed Till too early and they would wait a while before booking the Liverpudlian another fight.

“I think Till went back to the drawing board. He’s a young guy. After the win over (Donald Cerrone), we may have pushed him too soon. Let him get back and work on the things he needs to work on. He’s going to be around.”

UFC 244 takes place at Madison Square Garden on November 2nd. It is reported that Kamaru Usman vs. Colby Covington could headline the card.