CLANCY OVERELL | Editor | CONTACT
The world’s largest MMA promotion, the UFC is back in Australia for the second time this year, as middleweight champion Israel Adesanya fights the number 5 ranked middleweight Sean Strickland to defend his belt in Sydney this Sunday.
However, it’s the co-main event that is generating the most noise in the Harbour City, as Sydney’s own Bam Bam Tuivasa squares off against heavyweight Alexander Volkov.
Fighting at home for the first time since his Octagon UFC back in 2017, Bam Bam ‘The Koori Klitschko’ Tuivasa will be swinging with his back up against the cage in front of friends and family.
After a big week of preparation, including a private screening of the Barbie Movie at Mount Druitt HOYTS on Wednesday and a manny-peddy at his favourite Vietnamese salon in Blacktown yesterday, Bam Bam has ditched the bad boy streetwear and is coming into this fight against the world number 5 heavyweight with a suave new look.
While Tuivasa rose up the heavyweight ladder in style with five straight wins from 2020, to early 2022, The big uce ended up coming out second best in a bloodbath against Ciryl Gane in the first UFC to ever be hosted in Paris this time last year.
With one loss since then before Christmas, Bam Bam and his team hope to turn it around in Sydney this Sunday and chase a shot at the title over the next twelve months.
The task ahead of him looks to be one that the 30-year-old is more than prepared for, as he rolls through pre-fight media with a relaxed and confident demeanour, debuting a completely new look.
At the official UFC weigh-ins last night, Tuivasa appears to have flipped the script on his high-octane career as an eccentric streetfighter – and appeared on stage wearing a dashing silk shirt with luscious curly locks.
His new Miami Vice aesthetic appears to have rattled his opponent, with the Russian opponent left speechless during their face off.
“You look incredible my brother” said Volkov, as he ran his hand over Tuivasa’s designer shirt.
Tuivasa smiled at his 6 ft 6 opponent, who was obviously left in a trance by the silky Indigenous art print by Koori artists Shal and Otis Carey.
“I’ll get you one brother” said Tuivasa.
“Simply.. dashing” said the Russian, yet to make eye contact.