Israel Adesanya, Nigerian star, crowned 2020 World MMA fighter of the year

Israel Adesanya, Nigerian star, crowned 2020 World MMA fighter of the year

Israel Adesanya Nigerian mixed martial artist has been crowned 2020 fighter of the year at the World MMA Awards staged on Sunday, December 27.

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The 31-year-old remains invincible after successfully defending his UFC Middleweight title in the year under review.

Adesanya defeated the duo of Yoel Romero and Paulo Costa in the Octagon to increase his tally to 20 wins after 20 fights - winning 15 of those bouts through knockouts while the remaining were decided by the officials.

The New Zealand-born fighter also clinched Charles 'Mask' Lewis Fighter of the Year Award, as well as the prize for International Fighter of the Year.

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Daily Mail reports that this is the second consecutive time the Nigerian has won the award after winning unified the UFC Middleweight Championship in 2019.

Israel Adesanya

Israel Adesanya after defeating Paulo Costa of Brazil in their middleweight championship on September 27, 2020 in Abu Dhabi. Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC
Source: Getty Images

In 2018, Adesanya won the Breakthrough Fighter of the Year prize and his stock continues to rise in the MMA community.

The 31-year-old kicked off the year with a victory over Romero in Las Vegas' 248 event - his first fight since unifying the Middleweight Championship in October last year.

And then he knocked Costa out in the second round of his other fight of the year in September following a series of punches - a fight that won him Performance of the Night.

The publication has now predicted that the Nigerian could come up against one of his fiercest rivals in Jon Jones, with UFC president Dana White claiming that 'Bones' is ready to come out of retirement to take on the Middleweight champion.

Legit.ng earlier reported that Israel Adesanya has stated that in as much as he supports the EndSARS movement clamouring for the end of police brutality in Nigeria, he will only use his social media platform responsibly.

Nigerian youths had taken to the street to condemn police brutality calling for a total overhaul of the policing architecture in the country.

Several sportsmen across the globe have lent their voice to support the protests including boxing champion Anthony Joshua.

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