Report: David Branch Withdraws From UFC Vancouver Matchup Against Andrew Sanchez

By: Jay Pettry
Aug 1, 2019


Editor's note: The article has been updated on 8/1/19 at 3:00 p.m. ET with new information.

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The Ultimate Fighting Championship's return to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, has taken a hit, as middleweight David Branch has been forced to pull out of his fight against Andrew Sanchez.

On Thursday, MMAJunkie.com reported that Branch (22-6) will no longer be competing at UFC Fight Night 158 in September against Sanchez (11-4). The reason for Branch's withdrawal has not yet been made public. MMAFighting.com has announced, and later confirmed to Sherdog.com, that Marvin Vettori (13-4-1) will be replacing Branch to face Sanchez.

Former World Series of Fighting two-division champion Branch was looking to bounce back from the first two-fight skid in his career. In his last two outings, he was knocked out by Jared Cannonier last November, and more recently, submitted by Jack Hermansson in 49 seconds in March.

Sanchez has won his last two, taking decisions over Markus Perez and Marc-Andre Barriault. Those two fights are his only two since 2018, as "El Dirte" took some time off after back-to-back 2017 knockouts to Anthony Smith and Ryan Janes.

Vettori won for the first time since 2017 when he beat Cezar Ferreira on the scorecards at UFC Fight Night 155 in July. Each of the Italian's last five fights have gone the full 15 minutes, including a split decision loss to current interim champ Israel Adesanya as well as a draw with Omari Akhmedov.

UFC Fight Night 158 will take place on Sept. 14 at the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Headlining the event is a lightweight collision between Donald Cerrone and Justin Gaethje. Also, at light heavyweight, Glover Teixeira will take on Nikita Krylov.

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