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Adesanya Warns Du Plessis Ahead UFC Clash



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Israel Adesanya has knocked middleweight champion Dricus du Plessis’ colonial mindset, claiming the South African is not one African as the build-up to their UFC 305 main event in Australia on August 18 intensifies.

The animosity between du Plessis and Nigerian-born Adesanya stems from comments the South African made about Adesanya, and fellow African UFC champions Kamaru Usman and Francis Ngannou over a year ago.

During his impressive run to the middleweight title, du Plessis said he wanted to become the “first real African champion” because he still lives and trains in South Africa.

Meanwhile, Adesanya is based in New Zealand while Usman and Ngannou both live in America.

Adesanya later confronted du Plessis in the cage after his win over Rob Whittaker at UFC 290 in July last year, and the pair have been on a collision course ever since.

Speaking to CODE SPORTS in Sydney on Thursday, Adesanya explained why du Plessis’ comments rubbed him the wrong way.

“He’s not one of us, the way he tried to discredit me, Francis, and Kamaru, it’s like he’s not one of us. You’re not one of the three kings,” Adesanya said.

The way he approached it was with a colonial mindset. He could’ve come in and said, ‘It’s cool that we have three African champions. It would be cool to be the fourth one.’ But he’s like, ‘No, I’m the real African champion.’ He could’ve been one of us, but he doesn’t want to be one of us.

Where does that mindset come from? You see this, and you want it all for yourself.”

With six weeks to go before they settle their differences in the Octagon, Adesanya says du Plessis is now attempting to distance himself from those comments.

“He’s trying to backtrack and take it back,” Adesanya said. “Shut up. You know what you did, don’t back down now. I spoke to him in my native tongue. For me, it’s nice to lock in and let him know it’s not playing around.”

Adesanya hasn’t fought since his shock UFC 293 defeat to Sean Strickland in Sydney last September. It’s his longest-ever stretch between UFC fights, and he used the time to heal a few injuries.

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