10 Best Australian UFC Fighters in MMA History

10 Best Australian UFC Fighters in MMA History

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is no piece of old tackle, considering the brutal rounds of kicks and punches, blocks and dodges.

However, some fighters from Australia have come against all odds, performing exceptionally in the world’s most significant league — the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

Alexander Volkanovski, Robert Whittaker, and Tai Tuivasa are some Australian names that may readily come to your mind. Still, you can expect to find a host of distinguished fighters past and present.

Recognition is one of the most distinctive forms of rewarding excellence; therefore, we now present the best Australian UFC fighters in history.

Best Australian UFC Fighters

10. Jamie Mullarkey

Jamie Mullarkey
Jamie Mullarkey / Instagram

We can relate to your surprise regarding Mullarkey’s appearance on this list. However, the twenty-eight-year-old has worked to earn his recognition.

He had a poor run in his early days, losing two times successively via unanimous decision.

Still, he proved that he is a stellar champion winning fifteen of his next eighteen bouts.

His performances have earned him two Fight of the Night and one Performance of the Night award.

9. Dan Kelly

Dan Kelly
Dan Kelly / Instagram

Dan Kelly is famous for representing his country as a Judoka in four Olympic tournaments between 2000-2012.

Still, he proudly represented Australia in the UFC between 2014 and 2018, amassing a 6-4 record through his stint.

8. Kyle Noke

Kyle Noke
Kyle Noke / Instagram

Kyle Noke is arguably one of Australia’s best MMA fighters, winning twenty-two from thirty-three contests across the UFC, Xtreme Fighting Championships (XFC), Elite XC, and Cage Fighting Championships.

His UFC career might not have been the best of his travails, but he managed to win five from eleven contests.

He also won the Submission of the Night and Performance of the Night awards during his time in the promotion to be ranked amongst the best Australian MMA fighters that fought in the UFC.

7. Anthony Perosh

Anthony Perosh
Anthony Perosh / Instagram

Like Dan Kelly, Perosh had earned recognition before debuting in the UFC.

He even won bronze medals in the 1999 and 2003 World Jiu-Jitsu Championships.

Sadly, his story is similar to Kyle Noke’s, and he did not have the most blissful UFC career.

He could only manage five victories and a Knockout of the Night award from twelve UFC contests.

Nevertheless, he is still one of the best from his country to feature on the big stage.

6. George Sotiropoulos

George Sotiropoulos
George Sotiropoulos / Instagram

George Sotiropoulos is one of the Australian pioneers in the UFC, earning an invitation to participate in the league in 2007.

While he might not be remembered for bagging championships, he has contributed his quota by painting his nation’s colors in the UFC’s octagon as worthy competitors for the promotion.

George Sotiropoulos was a household name during his active years, winning fourteen from twenty-one MMA appearances.

He is also a two-time Fight of the Night awardee.

5. Jimmy Crute

Jimmy Crute
Source: Wikimedia

Conquering the Australian Hex Fight Series Light Heavyweight Division is not enough feat for Jimmy “The Brute” Crute, which could be a reason for his travails in the UFC.

While he has not battled for any championship, Crute currently sits at fifteenth in the UFC Light Heavyweight rankings, one of the highest ranked fighters from his country.

The Brute’s fights against Michał Oleksiejczuk in UFC 168 and Modestas Bukauskas in UFC Fight Night: Ortega vs. The Korean Zombie was the best of the night.

4. Jake Matthews

Jake Matthews
Jake Matthews / Instagram

Matthews debuted on the professional MMA scene in 2012 but did not take long before featuring in the sport’s biggest promotion in 2014.

After eight years in the league, he stands as one of Australia’s greatest fighters, winning eighteen from twenty-three bouts.

He has two Fight of the Night and one Performance of the Night awards.

3. Tai Tuivasa

Tai Tuivasa
Tai Tuivasa / Instagram

Tai Tuivasa has ventured into boxing and kickboxing and is currently electrifying UFC nights.

However, his ability to perfectly blend charisma and fighting prowess is something you would hardly find in many fighters; little wonder he is among the best Australian fighters in UFC history.

As of August 1, 2022, he sits third in the UFC Heavyweight Rankings, but his incredible record impresses us most about his career, winning fourteen from his seventeen professional UFC contests.

2. Alexander Volkanovski

Alexander Volkanovski
Alexander Volkanovski / Instagram

It would have been a poor list if we included some inspiring fighters without titles and excluded those who championed a division and successfully defended their titles.

Hence, we have Alexander Volkanovski — the current UFC Featherweight Champion, who has defended his title four times.

Remarkably, we can rank Alexander Volkanovski amongst MMA’s all-time bests as he is on a twenty-two-bout winning streak, fighting big names like Chad Mendes, Jose Aldo, Max Holloway, and Brian Ortega in his last ten contests.

1. Robert Whittaker

Robert Whittaker
Robert Whittaker / Instagram

Robert Whittaker is the first man to fly his country’s colors high in the UFC after emerging as an interim UFC Middleweight Champion and fastening his hold on the title to be Australia’s first UFC champion.

Whittaker holds a 14-3 record in the UFC, defeating some of the world’s best middleweight, including Derek Brunson, Yoel Romeo, and Jared Cannonier.

The thirty-one-year-old is a well-rounded fighter, combining the strategy and durability that makes him the kind of fighter others would rather not challenge.

While he no longer competes in the middleweight division, he previously ranked number one in the UFC men’s pound-for-pound rankings, the first Australian UFC star to achieve the feat.1

Two Fight of the Night and one Performance of the Night awards are among the accomplishments in Volkanovski’s profile.

Thanks to his astounding accomplishments, Whittaker tops the list of the best Australian UFC fighters in MMA history.

Wrap Up

The UFC has materialized into a mainstream spectacle, and Australians have sailed through to the United States to participate in the exhilarating UFC nights.

Undoubtedly, many Australians have debuted on the big scene, but not all would be recognized for their contributions like the ten we mentioned in this article.

While some of these figures do not come close to the world’s bests, they are household names in their country and are worthy of their mention.

References & Notes

Facts Sources:
  1. Alexander Volkanovski is the first Australian to be crowned the UFC No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter. Sportsbible

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