What condition is Tom Aspinall's son diagnosed with? The motivation behind the UFC heavyweight advocating for parental awareness and empowerment

UFC heavyweight contender Tom Aspinall
UFC heavyweight contender Tom Aspinall [Image Courtesy: @tomaspinallofficial on Instagram]

Tom Aspinall is gearing up to take on Sergei Pavlovich in the co-main event of UFC 295, vying for the interim heavyweight title. The penultimate UFC pay-per-view event of 2023 is scheduled to take place on Saturday, November 11, at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

While Aspinall's skills in the UFC are well-recognized, what is lesser-known about him is the personal journey influenced by his son's autism diagnosis. In the octagon, Aspinall has the makings of a future world champion, but at heart, the 30-year-old Brit is primarily a dedicated father to his seven-year-old and twin four-year-old sons.

During an interview with BBC Sport last month, Tom Aspinall revealed that in 2021, during the global COVID-19 lockdown, one of his twin children started experiencing delays in speech and other important developmental milestones. He noticed that his son was not responding to his name and lacked eye contact, and he seemed unresponsive when told off.

Initially, the No.4-ranked heavyweight fighter attributed this to the impact of the lockdown on socialization. However, after watching the documentary 'Paddy and Christine McGuinness: Our Family and Autism,' Aspinall realized that his son's behavior might be indicative of autism.

Tom Aspinall draws inspiration from his son's autism, underscoring the significance of raising awareness, fostering understanding, and promoting acceptance of autism, especially in public spaces. As a mixed martial artist, he aims to leverage his platform to empower parents of autistic children and create greater awareness about the condition.

Michael Bisping offers insights on Tom Aspinall's emerging UFC heavyweight journey

Michael Bisping recently shared his thoughts on the upcoming interim heavyweight championship match between Tom Aspinall and Sergei Pavlovich. Bisping is a strong advocate for Aspinall and has a high opinion of him.

During a recent pre-fight show on TNT Sports, 'The Count' confidently endorsed his fellow Englishman, predicting that Aspinall would convincingly defeat Pavlovich at UFC 295 and eventually rise to become one of the greatest heavyweight champions in UFC history. Bisping stated:

"Here's what's going to happen, I do believe he [Aspinall] beats him [Pavlovich]. I believe he makes it look relatively easy. And that's not disrespect to Sergei, it’s because of how capable Tom is, and I think the skill set that he has, has got all the ingredients to get him the win here."

He added:

"I think he beats him. I think he beats Jon Jones if that comes up. And I think he dominates the heavyweight division for quite some time, and he will retire as the greatest heavyweight champion that the UFC has ever seen."

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Edited by C. Naik
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