The spirits of MMA fighter Hikitetapu Haunui have been lifted after the announcement he will fight in the XFC - 67kg division (Extreme Fighting Championship) in Australia.
Haunui says, “This is huge for myself, my family and Māoridom.”
He becomes the first Māori fighter to contest for the Welterweight title. Haunui's opponent is Andy Stanway of Australia.
Other Māori fighters who have been involved with XFC include Dylan "The Villian" Andrews and James Te Huna.
Haunui adds, “It means a lot to me, I see them as prophets in this sport. They are the first Māori fighting at this level of fight sport.”
The fight will be at Mansfield Tavern in Brisbane on November 7 for the competition title belt.
If Haunui wins his fight, he will become the No.1 ranked fighter in his weight division.