Melbourne, Australia – After years of anticipation, Australia’s sporting capital will play host to the biggest combat sports event the country has witnessed, as UFC® 193: LAWLER vs. CONDIT finds a home at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium. In an Australian first, a UFC® championship belt will go on the line in the main event with welterweight champion Robbie Lawler slated to defend his title against former UFC interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit on Sunday, November 15, 2015.
“Finally the UFC is coming to Melbourne in what will be the biggest UFC event EVER!” UFC president Dana White said. “There’s been a lot of talk about Melbourne, title fights and stadium shows. The UFC is doing all three at the Etihad Stadium in front of 70,000 people. Australia has been an amazing market for the UFC and to thank the Aussies for all of their support we are bringing the superstar of the welterweight division, UFC World Champion Robbie Lawler. He will be facing the always-exciting “Natural Born Killer” Carlos Condit. Robbie Lawler is coming off of the most exciting title defense in welterweight history. We are also bringing the rematch of the greatest heavyweight fight I have ever seen between New Zealand legend Mark Hunt vs. Big Foot Silva. November 15 is going to be insane!”
Fighting for the first time outside of his native United States of America at UFC® 193: LAWLER vs. CONDIT, welterweight champion Robbie Lawler (26-10-0 1 NC, fighting out of Coconut Creek, FL, USA) is enjoying a renaissance inside the Octagon®. Since his return to the organisation in 2013, Lawler has won seven of his last eight bouts, including a tight split-decision victory over Johny Hendricks at UFC® 181 to claim the welterweight title.
Most recently Lawler is coming off his first title defense at UFC® 189 over Canadian mixed martial arts prodigy Rory Macdonald, in an incredible five-round back-and-forth battle, which earned the ‘Fight of the Night’ bonus. Lawler is no stranger to fight bonuses, having earned ‘Knockout of the Night’ for his performance at UFC® 157 which signified his return to the UFC and the welterweight division. He also won ‘Fight of the Night’ against Johny Hendricks, when they first battled for the vacant UFC welterweight belt at UFC® 171, and against Matt Brown in a title-eliminator bout at UFC FIGHT NIGHT™: LAWLER vs. BROWN.
Set to face Lawler across the Octagon® at UFC® 193: LAWLER vs. CONDIT is Carlos Condit (30-8-0, fighting out of Albuquerque, NM, USA). Condit became the UFC interim welterweight champion after defeating bad-boy Nick Diaz at UFC® 143 in 2012.
Owner of four ‘Fight of the Night’ and two ‘Knockout of the Night’ performance bonuses, Condit has competed and won against a who’s-who of the mixed martial arts welterweight elite including Rory MacDonald, Dong Hyun Kim and Martin Kampmann. Returning to the Octagon® in May 2015 after a 14-month injury lay-off, Condit has catapulted himself back into 170-pound title contention. A dominant win over Thiago Alves at UFC FIGHT NIGHT™: CONDIT vs. ALVES was a performance worthy of granting him another shot at the UFC welterweight title.
UFC® 193: LAWLER vs. CONDIT will also feature a stacked fight card of elite Australian and international mixed martial artists, including:
- In the co-main event, Australian knockout artist and fan-favourite Mark ‘Super Samoan’ Hunt (10-9-1, fighting out of Sydney, Australia) and Brazilian behemoth Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva (19-7-0 1 NC, fighting out of Coconut Creek, Florida, USA) will meet in the Octagon® once again to settle their 2013 ‘Fight of the Year’ draw, remembered as the greatest UFC heavyweight fight of all time.
- Coming off an impressive first-round KO win over Brad Tavares, Robert Whittaker (14-4-0, fighting out of Sydney, Australia) will look to keep his unblemished record at middleweight and break into the division’s Top 10 with a win over brash Brit and perennial contender Michael ‘The Count’ Bisping (28-7-0, fighting out of Manchester, England).
- Hometown hero and Australian rising star Jake ‘The Celtic Kid’ Matthews (9-1-0, fighting out of Melbourne, Australia) will be looking to jump back on the winner’s list against experienced Mexican Akbarh ‘El Caballero’ Arreola (23-9-1, fighting out of Tijuana, Mexico) at lightweight.
- Pioneer Australian mixed martial artist Kyle ‘KO’ Noke (20-7-1, fighting out of Albuquerque, NM, USA) will continue his run in the welterweight division against Polish submission specialist Peter Sobotta (15-4-1, fighting out of Au, Balingen, Germany).
- Light heavyweight veteran Anthony ‘The Hippo’ Perosh (15-9-0, fighting out of Sydney, Australia) will finally face American prospect Gian Villante (13-5-0, fighting out of Bellmore, NY, USA). The pair were originally set to meet at UFC FIGHT NIGHT™: TE HUNA vs. MARQUARDT in June 2014, but Perosh was forced to withdraw due to injury.
- Four-time Australian Olympic Judoka Daniel Kelly (9-1-0, fighting out of Melbourne, Australia) will relish the opportunity to compete in front of his home crowd taking on Brazilian jiu-jitsu specialist Ricardo Abreu (5-2-0, fighting out of Huntington Beach, CA, USA) in a middleweight tilt.
- In an Australian welterweight showdown, Richard ‘Filthy Rich’ Walsh (8-4, fighting out of Sydney, Australia) will face Western Australia’s Steve Kennedy (22-7, fighting out of Morley, Western Australia)
Additional bouts for UFC® 193: LAWLER vs. CONDIT will be announced in the coming weeks.