Kelvin Gastelum, who was denied his chance at the UFC’s middleweight title due to champion Robert Whittaker’s withdrawal at UFC 234, will face Israel Adesanya for the interim title at UFC 236, UFC president Dana White told ESPN’s Brett Okamoto.

Gastelum has captured his last two bouts, a split decision victory over Jacare Souza at UFC 224 and a KO victory over former middleweight champion Michael Bisping at Fight Night Shanghai.

The main event title bout at the Melbourne, Australia card was scuttled after Whittaker was forced out of the fight and had to undergo emergency surgery for an abdominal hernia.


Adesanya’s fight against Anderson Silva was elevated into the main event at UFC 234 and he earned his way into the interim title bout with a unanimous decision victory.

The 29-year-old has seen his star rise rapidly since making his UFC debut at UFC 221 in February of 2018 against Rob Wilkinson.

He has won all five of his bouts in the promotion and is 16-0 in his professional MMA career.

The event is scheduled to take place on April 13, but the location of the card has not been announced by the UFC.