Report- UFC 231: Jimi Manuwa vows to put on a ‘masterpiece’ against Thiago Santos – EXCLUSIVE | UFC | Sport

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Updated: December 8, 2018
UFC 231: Jimi Manuwa vows to put on a 'masterpiece' against Thiago Santos - EXCLUSIVE | UFC | Sport

London’s Manuwa returns to the Octagon early on Sunday morning on the main card of UFC 231, where he’ll take on the dangerous Thiago Santos.

Manuwa enters the bout on the back of consecutive losses to Volkan Oezdemir and Jan Blachowicz, defeats which derailed his hopes of a shot at the light-heavyweight title.

Most fighters would dwell on back-to-back losses and let them have a detrimental effect on their state of mind, and understandably so.

That can’t be said of Manuwa, though, who has put his skid firmly to the back of his mind.

“It is what it is. I’ve accepted it,” Manuwa told Express Sport when reflecting on the first consecutive losses of his career. “My last with Blachowicz was a three-round war and the fight of the night in London.

“You’ve just got to move on. You can’t dwell on the past. Saturday is here now, it’s time to perform on it there.”

Manuwa and Santos were due to lock horns with one another in September in the main event of UFC Fight Night 137, which took place in the latter’s home country of Brazil.

The fight didn’t go ahead, though, as Manuwa tore his hamstring shortly after arriving in Sao Paulo – which was a bitter pill for him to swallow.

“I can’t describe it,” ‘Posterboy’ said. “I didn’t know how to feel. We did all the hard work, I had sacrificed a lot and been away from my family and I missed my youngest’s birthday, it was heartbreaking for me.

“Letting all the fans down as well in Brazil. It was very frustrating for me. But looking on the bright side, we’re here now and I’m going to do what I’m going to do.”

Following the cancellation of his scheduled bout with Glover Teixeira and the postponement of his showdown with Santos, it’s safe to say that Manuwa is itching to get back inside the cage.

And he’s promised the fruits of his labour in his back-to-back training camps will result in a spectacular finish.

“I was there cage side for his last fight. He’s explosive, he likes to kick a lot,” Manuwa said of Santos. “He’s a kick boxer who switches from orthodox to southpaw, so I’m expecting a technical fight.

“But you’re going to see a masterpiece. I’ve been working on some great things in camp. I’m looking forward to performing.

He added: “Expect to see a knockout machine. I’ve been working on some great stuff in camp and I can’t wait to display what I’ve been working on.”

Watch UFC 231: Holloway vs Ortega live on BT Sport 3 from 1am, with the prelims exclusively live on UFC FIGHT PASS from 11.15pm.