clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Wanderlei Silva Confirms Yoshihiro Akiyama Fight Next Year in Australia

It looks like Wanderlei Silva vs. Yoshihiro Akiyama is all but official for early 2010 in Sydney, Australia.

"The Axe Murderer" posted a video on his YouTube Channel late Thursday night announcing that he will be facing "Sexyama" on Feb. 21 in the UFC's first event Down Under.

"I'm so happy because that's the first event there," Silva said. "My boss put me to fight there, and this is a great honor for me because I fight in the main event in Cologne, in Germany, that was the first event there. And now I'm going to fight in the first event in Australia."

Silva (32-10-1) seems legitimately humbled by the fact that he will help introduce the Australian fans to UFC action. He was last seen losing to Rich Franklin at UFC 99 in a close unanimous decision. Since then, Silva underwent facial surgery to remove scar tissue.

Akiyama (13-1-0, 2 NC) was successful in his UFC debut, defeating Alan Belcher via split decision at UFC 100 in July. The fight marked his first in North America.

It will be interesting to see how the UFC presents this event to its North American fans. When they've held shows in Europe, they've either aired them via tape delay on Spike or on pay-per-view during the day and in their usual 10 PM ET time slot. However, since Sydney is 15 hours ahead of the Eastern time zone, the UFC will be forced to make a difficult decision: save the show for primetime even though a lot of fans will probably check out the results online or offer it live on pay-per-view in the middle of the night with replays later in the day.

It is still unclear whether this will be UFC 110 or 111. The organization also has a yet-to-be announced show scheduled for Feb. 6 in Las Vegas.

Update: Yahoo! Sports' Dave Meltzer is reporting that the pay-per-view will air live in North America at its usual 10 PM ET time slot, meaning the opening bout will happen at approximately 11 AM Sunday morning in Australia and main matches at 1 PM.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting