With just a few days to go until UFC 276 and Dricus du Plessis’ first bout against a ranked opponent in the promotion, the South African fighter says he is ready for Brad Tavares.
Du Plessis has been training in Cape Town ahead of his return to the United States for the event in Las Vegas.
How to watch Dricus du Plessis fight Brad Tavares
UFC 276 will be broadcast on SuperSport in South Africa, with the fight set to get underway at around 02:00 (SAST) on Sunday 3 July.
Stillknocks initially flew to the United States to face Chris Curtis.
He would then draw Anthony Hernandez after Curtis was forced out with an injury.
However, when Kelvin Gastelum needed a new opponent, Du Plessis was pulled from the scheduled bout against Hernandez to face him.
It wasn’t to be though as Gastelum was forced out due to injury and Du Plessis did not get to compete on the big night.
Du Plessis is undefeated in two UFC bouts scoring KO victories over both Markus Perez and Trevin Giles.
Du Plessis is still some way off being a credible challenger to The Last Stylebender Israel Adensaya, but a victory over Tavares will bring him a step closer to being ranked himself.
South Africa’s Dricus du Plessis won his UFC 264 fight against American Trevin Giles in impressive fashion. Photo: AFP
“Just over a week to go till #UFC276 and I’m in the best shape of my life, thank you to my team at the CIT Performance Institute for getting me ready as always and my coaches for all the time invested!”
He also thanked USN for fueling him “in the best possible way to be ready for war.”
Dricus du Plessis angered by pulled fight
Du Plessis was unhappy with Gastelum’s withdrawal after having him pulled from a confirmed fight, and felt that the circumstances were fishy.
“Who gets an injury a week before a fight?” he questioned back in April. “What could you possibly be doing to get injured, and if he was injured, you don’t know what the camp was like, but why would he insist on having a new opponent when he had to pull out? … So he wasn’t injured on Monday, because that’s [when] he insisted on the fight, and all of a sudden, he’s injured on Friday? That sounds very fishy to me.
“I guess they started watching tape and that’s where the problems started, to be honest. … He really needs a win – let’s not beat around the bush, he needs a win – and this is a great opportunity for him. He’s fighting a guy who’s making some noise, a South African guy, he’s ranked No. 20, and he finds out, let’s get this easy fight and get in the win column. … Then he watched the tape and realized this is no walkover fight.”
UFC 276 main card matchups, odds
Middleweight: Israel Adesanya -475 vs. Jared Cannonier +365
Featherweight: Alexander Volkanovski -200 vs. Max Holloway +165
Middleweight: Sean Strickland -110 vs. Alex Pereira -110
Welterweight: Robbie Lawler -125 vs. Bryan Barberena +105
Bantamweight: Pedro Munhoz +240 vs. Sean O’Malley -300
UFC 276 prelims matchups/odds
Lightweight: Brad Riddell +130 vs. Jalin Turner -155
Welterweight: Ian Garry -175 vs. Gabriel Green +145
Welterweight: Jim Miller -185 vs. Donald Cerrone +155
Middleweight: Brad Tavares +120 vs. Dricus du Plessis -145
UFC 276 early prelims matchups/odds
Middleweight: Uriah Hall +255 vs. André Muniz -325
Flyweight: Jessica Eye +230 vs. Maycee Barber -290
Bantamweight: Jessica-Rose Clark -155 vs. Julija Stoliarenko +130