UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has posted a heartening health update to social media.
The New Zealand born, Australia bred fighter was forced to withdraw from February’s UFC 221 card and his first scheduled defence of the middleweight strap against former champ Luke Rockhold earlier this month, with reports suggesting that he had suffered multiple injuries.
However, speaking to TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter shortly after UFC 220 in Boston a little over a week ago, Dana White worryingly revealed that an internal staph infection was the main issue with which Whittaker was struggling.
“He had staph infection in his stomach and from what I understand it wasn’t treated properly and started to eat away parts of his organs,” the UFC president told Bronsteter. “He is in serious condition. So, it’s going to be a minute before he is back, I think. Hopefully, it turns around quick but that stuff is life-threatening if not treated the right way.”
Thankfully, it seems that things have turned around quite quickly for the 27-year-old champion. On Monday morning, Whittaker posted a picture to Instagram in which he can be seen hitting pads with his coach.
“Pumped to get back to work,” wrote the Sydney-based fighter alongside the snap, before adding the hashtag “#willbebackstrongerthanever”.
Whittaker won the interim middleweight title with a five-round decision win over Yoel Romero last July. In December, he was promoted to undisputed champion when Georges St-Pierre vacated the title as a result of an ongoing struggle with colitis.
After Whittaker withdrew from UFC 221, the promotion decided to create yet another interim title, which will be contested by Rockhold and the Aussie’s replacement, and old foe, the aforementioned Romero.