Challenger Sean Strickland has vowed to end Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya‘s run at the top when UFC 293 officially kicks off on Sunday 10 September. The main event fight promises to be a bruising climax to a stacked card, which also sees Tai Tuivasa take on Alexander Volkov in a clash of the heavyweights. With the Sydney spectacle marking the first UFC event to be held on Australian soil since 2017, UFC 293 will usher in a new era for MMA Down Under. Here is everything you need to know about UFC 293, including start time, fight card and news.
Table of contents
Tale of the Tape
|Israel Adesanya (Champion)||Sean Strickland|
|Record: 24-2||Record: 27-5|
|Height: 193cm||Height: 185cm|
|Reach: 80 inches||Reach: 76 inches|
|Weight: 185lbs||Weight: 185lbs|
|Stance: Switch||Stance: Orthodox|
|DOB: Jul 22, 1989||DOB: Feb 27, 1991|
Over the past few weeks, the bad blood between Israel Adesanya and Sean Strickland has been mounting. The Kiwi Champion has made no secrets of his desire to put Strickland in a chokehold, revealing that he aims to make the Californian challenger submit. If so, it would mark the first submission victory in Adesanya’s illustrious 26 professional fight career. At present, he has a record of 16 wins via knockout and eight via decision.
“What do I want in my career? Submission, I definitely want a submission,” Adesanya told TSN. “It might be this fight. I know he’s going to wrestle. He’d be dumb not to. I know he’s going to try and mix it up…He’s doing this whole thing, ‘Man dance, man dance.’…He’s going to crotch sniff. That’s what he’s going to do.”
Adesanya’s tactic flip comes after Strickland revealed that he was more than happy to face the champion head-on. The journeyman fighter, who has a 27-5 record, claimed that his best chance of beating Adesanya was by wrestling, something few opponents have been able to match him on.
Nevertheless, it’s been a journey for Strickland to even make it this far. When UFC 293 was first announced back in May, the fight world was certain to see a bout between Adesanya and number one contender Dricus du Plessis. The South African had recently defeated Australian Robert Whittaker to take up the mantle, however, declined the UFC 293 fight, citing recovery time as his reasoning. The announcement prompted a sharp response from Adesanya, who claimed “He (du Plessis) doesn’t call the shots, I do”.
“I need you to understand that. I call the shots. You don’t call the shot, d**kless. You need to understand this,” Adesanya said at the time. “You can sit pretty wherever you want, but if I decide to, I might give (the title shot) to whoever wins between (Paulo) Costa and Khamzat (Chimaev), not you.”
It was good news for Strickland, with du Plessis’ absence opening the door for an unlikely championship run, however, the build-up has been anything but ideal. Just this week, Strickland was approached by an Adesanya fan at Bondi which resulted in Strickland reportedly punching the fan in the stomach. The news got all the way back to UFC president Dana White, who stopped short of denouncing Strickland’s behaviour and instead called for increased security.
“Yes, we’re prepared for it and yes we have people around him now,” White said. “So, he won’t be punching people in the stomach anymore – for fun or not for fun.”
UFC 293 Start Time
The UFC 293 event will take place on Sunday 10 September at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney. The early prelims start from 8:30am AEST, followed by the prelims at 10am. The main event bouts are slated to begin from around 12pm, however, it’s likely that the Adesanya and Strickland Middleweight Championship bout won’t kick off until around 2pm.
- Early Prelims: 8:30am AEST
- Prelims: 10am AEST
- Main Events: 12pm AEST
How to Watch UFC 293
As with all of the sport’s events, the main card for UFC 293 will be available exclusively via pay-per-view. This can be purchased via UFC Fight Pass or Foxtel Main Event and Kayo. The prelims and early prelims will be available to watch through UFC Fight Pass and on ESPN.
Where is UFC 293?
As mentioned, UFC 293 will be held at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, Australia. The event was confirmed in May 2023 and will serve as the first of many in a new four-year deal between the state and the MMA organisation. The partnership, worth a reported AUD$16 million, was announced by New South Wales (NSW) premier Chris Minns and Peter Kloczko, UFC vice president Australia and New Zealand.
“We are bringing three major UFC events to Sydney for the first time in more than a decade, which is a major coup for the people of NSW,” Minns said at the time. “This government has a laser-sharp focus to ensure we continue securing a calendar of exclusive, diverse and unmissable events to boost our visitor economy, support local businesses and create more jobs, and that’s exactly what these UFC events will do.”
UFC 293 Full Card
Across the UFC 293 event, there will be 12 fights in total, kicking off with the early prelims at 8:30am AEST. Of the bouts, the Middleweight Championship tussle is firming to be the most important, however, the heavyweight slug-fest between Tai Tuivasa and Alexander Volkov could well be the most entertaining.
Australian Tuivasa is known for his ferocious knockout power, evident with a string of TKO striking wins, however, his recent form has waned. Two successive losses to Sergei Pavlovich and Ciryl Gane have damaged his reputation as one of the most-feared big men in the game and he’ll be keen to get the narrative back on his terms when he steps into the ring with Alexander Volkov.
The Russian fighter is coming off back-to-back wins, both by TKO punches and is in stellar form. With both fighters preferring a stand-up, boxing-style approach, the battle between Tuivasa and Volkov promises to be an all-out assault and could be one of the more interesting fights on the UFC 293 card.
|Fighter 1||Fighter 2||Division|
|Israel Adesanya||Sean Strickland||Middleweight Championship|
|Tai Tuivasa||Alexander Volkov||Heavyweight|
|Manel Kape||Felipe dos Santos||Flyweight|
|Justin Tafa||Austen Lane||Heavyweight|
|Tyson Pedro||Anton Turkalj||Light Heavyweight|
|Fighter 1||Fighter 2||Division|
|Carlos Ulberg||Jung Da-Un||Light Heavyweight|
|Jack Jenkins||Chepe Mariscal||Featherweight|
|Jamie Mullarkey||John Makdessi||Lightweight|
|Nasrat Haqparast||Landon Quinones||Lightweight|
|Fighter 1||Fighter 2||Division|
|Mike Mathetha||Charlie Radtke||Welterweight|
|Shane Young||Gabriel Miranda||Featherweight|
|Kevin Jousset||Kiefer Crosbie||Welterweight|
UFC 293 FAQs
UFC 293 will start at 8:30am AEST on Sunday 10 September. It will begin with the early prelims, followed by the prelims at 10am. The main event bouts are slated to begin around 12pm, with the Adesanya and Strickland Middleweight Championship bout to kick off around 2pm.
UFC 293 will be held at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, Australia on 10 Sepember 2023. The event was confirmed in May 2023 and will serve as the first of many in a new four-year deal between the state and the MMA organisation.
The main card for UFC 293 will be available exclusively through pay-per-view via UFC Fight Pass or Foxtel Main Event and Kayo. The prelims and early prelims will be available to watch through UFC Fight Pass and on ESPN.