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UFC 254 Tai Tuivasa exclusive: Australia has the best striking in the world

UFC heavyweight Tai Tuivasa
UFC heavyweight Tai Tuivasa
Dhruv Sharma
Modified 21 Oct 2020, 13:04 IST

Tai Tuivasa is all set for UFC 254 where he takes on the 7-foot-tall veteran Stefan Struve in his first outing of 2020.

Tuivasa spoke exclusively with Sportskeeda during the virtual media day interaction. Here are the key points from our conversation with the Aussie.

On being asked about additional pressure ahead of this fight considering that he is on a 3-fight losing streak, Tuivasa was thoughtful in his reply.

“I would not have taken the fight if I fought like that[cautiously]. I’m in this sport to test myself and I need to fight these guys to do that. I just need to improve on a few things.”

He also responded to a question about Australia-New Zealand being the new hub for Mixed Martial Arts.

“I said it when I first came here (UFC), we’ve got much more coming from our side of the world, especially now since the smaller guys are getting good on the ground and we are being able to mix it up with other countries. I have always said it I stand by it, we have the best stand- in our side of the world compared to all other parts of the world…there’s definitely more to come.”.

Considering that he is a fan-friendly fighter who often times celebrates with the fans, Tuivasa had a rather surprising take on fighting in an empty arena.

“I’ll do my thing, as long as I vibe out to my walk out song, I got my tunes pumping, I think it might be good for me (no crowd). I kind of feed off the crowd and sometimes it might be a good thing and sometimes it might be a bad thing. I am looking forward to something new, kind of like hard sparring…something new and ready for it.”.

Tai Tuivasa also commented that while he would have loved to fight earlier in the year, the pandemic closed gyms and he had to wait to get back into the Octagon.


This time off did him good, however, and he used to time to go back to his roots. He said he felt good after the break and was “ready to get a win”.

Tai Tuivasa will go ahead with the "Shoey" celebration despite pandemic

When asked about his infamous “shoey” celebration and whether he would go ahead with it despite the pandemic, Tai Tuivasa replied that he had “made his bed” and will “lay in it”.

He added that it’s been a long time since he did the celebration and that it was now time for a “hard-earned shoey”.

Tai Tuivasa also confirmed that he would not be walking out to “My heart will go on” for his fight but has promised that his walkout track will surely be a “banger”.

Published 21 Oct 2020, 13:04 IST
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