Heavyweight high-flyer Ciryl Gane will be returning to the Octagon in 40 days time. He will be taking on the dangerous number 2 ranked heavyweight contender Derrick Lewis for the interim title shot. The fight is set to take place on the 7th of August in Houston and will be headlining the main event of UFC 265.
The news was conveyed by the UFC President Dana White himself, and was later confirmed by various reporters including Brett Okamoto of ESPN.
The reason Francis Ngannou isn’t the opponent is due to the fact that he wouldn’t be available to defend his title by the month of August. And hence, UFC President decided to go ahead with an interim title as he felt that both the heavyweights were deserving of a title shot.
“This comes as a complete shock” – Francis Ngannou’s manager on Derrick Lewis vs Ciryl Gane
Ngannou’s aganet Marque Martin wasn’t convinced with the idea of an interime title shot this soon. He said (As reported by Okamoto), “This comes as a complete shock. To make an interim title so soon, if you look at the history of this division, it comes as a surprise. We hope to get clarity and figure out something with the UFC soon.”
Ciryl Gane is just coming off a victory over Alexander Volkov in the main event of UFC Vegas 30. He outstruck the tall and lanky Russian, who after one point had no clue to the Frenchman’s striking. Gane has never lost in his MMA career, and is currently 9-0 in his MMA career.
Derrick Lewis, on the other hand, is coming off a victory over Curtis Blaydes, earlier this year. His vicious knockout of Blaydes cemented his position as the number 2 ranked heavyweight contender.