Under huvudkortet på UFC 221 tog Jake Matthews (12-3) sig an den kinesiske fightern Li Jingliang (14-5). Under ett tillfälle under matchen fick Matthews utstå en uppenbar ögonpetning från sin motståndare, utan att domaren gjorde någonting. Ögonpetningen har fått stor uppmärksamhet efter matchen och i en intervju med submission radio efter matchen uttalade sig Matthews om situationen.
The bastard! Nah, nah honestly there are no hard feelings at all. You know it’s a fight, the adrenalines high. You know you just do things instinctually and you don’t realize. I didn’t realize at the time, my vision went blurry. I was on the floor, I felt the blood. We were down and my vision went blurry, honestly I couldn’t feel it was a finger, the adrenaline was going. I didn’t know what was going on, I thought maybe just some blood in the eye, but I think it was the finger in the eye, I couldn’t see out of my right eye for a part of the next round and it sort of cleared up again. As I said, no hard feelings, these things happen. You know people grab gloves, you got to do what you got to do to win.
Ögonpetning skedde samtidigt som Matthews höll Jingliang i en Guillotine och Matthews fick frågan om han trodde att han hade satt greppet om det inte varit för ögonpetningen.
It was tight, you know obviously it was slippery. He did a good job defending, pushing his head away. It would have been better if he hadn’t you know he opened my eye a little bit which made it worse. But you know it is what it is.
Matchen var även Matthews andra match i weltervikt, vilket han gav sina tankar om.
I mean the engine was there. I looked tired but it was a tough fight, a tough opponent, and I just needed, I always knew what I needed to do bring what I do in training into my fight, and it was just to just enjoy it. And all my other fights you know, you never wanna, you never wanna get kicked out of the UFC and lose your dream job, and that’s the pressure. I always went into my fights to not to lose, rather than just to get in, do what I do and I’ll smile and so all fight week, which brought the best out of me. So I’ll continue doing that.
Nedan kan ni se hela intervjun:
Matthew står för närvarande med två vinster i rad sedan han flyttat upp till weltervikt och besegrade senast Li Jingliang via enhälligt domslut.