South African MMA star Dricus du Plessis says that he accepted his first UFC fight even before he knew who he would be facing in Abu Dhabi.
Du Plessis will make his UFC debut in a fight against Brazilian Markus Perez (11-3 MMA, 2-3 UFC) on Sunday 11 October.
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The fight will feature on the main card of the UFC Fight Night: Moraes vs. Sandhagen event.
Du Plessis said there was never any question that he was going to accept the call from Dana White’s combat sports giants.
Speaking at a press conference ahead of the fight, Du Plessis said: “This is massive, everything came about so quickly, they literally phoned me and said you’re flying out next week. I took the fight immediately, I was so excited for it.”
Weight concerns for Dricus du Plessis
Du Plessis said that he had been a little concerned about his progress towards making the cut-off weight for the middleweight bout.
“The weight was the only concern up until yesterday and we are now on track. We are exactly where I need to be, and now that’s not a problem for me anymore,” Du Plessis added.
The 26-year-old South African is relishing the experience of being on Fight Island and hopes to spring a surprise in the Octagon this weekend.
“This week has been amazing being on Fight Island; it is a historic place and as soon as they announced it I was so excited to watch the fights and here I am competing on it, so it has been amazing.”
Lack of crowd a great pity
Du Plessis says that he would have liked to channel energy from the crowd on his UFC debut but is ready to rise to the challenge of fighting behind closed doors.
“The biggest challenge here is going to be that I’m fighting in front of now crowd. The fact that I’m fighting in UFC is nothing but more motivation its not going to get me more stressed. In my debut fight in KSW I fought in front of a sold-out crowd as the main eventer but I managed that and I won that belt. You know fighting for those big moments tends to make me performer that little bit better.”
“I honestly think I am going to do something special and put on the best performance of my career,” Du Plessis declared.
Where can you watch Dricus du Plessis fight?
The entire UFC Fight Night: Moraes v Sandhagen main card will be broadcast on SuperSport Variety 3 with a portion of the card also going out on SS Grandstand. The main card begins at 03:00 on Sunday 11 October.