The newest international iteration of “The Ultimate Fighter” now has a complete cast, as UFC officials Thursday announced 16 Canadian and Australian fighters set to do battle on “TUF Nations: Canada vs. Australia.”
Eight middleweights and eight welterweights will be divided into two teams based on their nationalities. Filmed just north of Montreal, the 12-episode season airs Wednesdays on Fox Sports 1 starting Jan. 15 and will culminate with a three-hour live finale next year.
Team Canada sports four unbeaten prospects, including Olivier Aubin-Mercier, Chad Laprise, Matt DesRoches and Elias Theodorou. Headed by Patrick Cote, the squad will also feature notable additions in former Ring of Combat champion Nordine Taleb, onetime MFC talent Sheldon Westcott and 30-fight pro Kajan Johnson.
Coached by Kyle Noke, the Australian team will be represented by five undefeated up-and-comers: Daniel Kelly, Tyler Manawaroa, Jake Matthews, Brendan O’Reilly and Zein Saliba. Once-beaten competitors Chris Indich and Richard Walsh will also fight for Team Australia, as will eight-fight pro Vik Grujic.
Cote and Noke will square off in a 170-pound bout at the conclusion of the season. The ex-middleweights both enter that confrontation coming off victories, as Cote outpointed Bobby Voelker in March at UFC 158. Noke last competed more than one year ago, when he scored a technical knockout over Charlie Brenneman in just 45 seconds at UFC 152.
“TUF: Canada vs. Australia” Cast