UFC 221 has taken a huge hit with Robert Whittaker being forced to withdrawal from his title fight with Luke Rockhold next month due to an undisclosed injury. Rockhold will now face Yoel Romero in what will be an interim-title fight for the middleweight belt. The winner will face Whittaker when he is healthy to unify the belt.
What makes this an even bigger blow is UFC 221 is taking place in Perth, Australia and Whittaker is the first Australian based UFC champion in history. Whittaker was the perfect headliner for this event. The UFC announced that customers who purchased a ticket are eligible for a full-refund.
Romero is coming off a loss to Whittaker, but had won eight straight fights before losing by unanimous decision. Rockhold is coming off a submission win over David Branch just one fight after losing his first title defense to Michael Bisping.