Former UFC champion Conor McGregor announces retirement

Conor McGregor
Conor McGregor. File photo: AFP

Dublin: Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) featherweight and lightweight champion Conor McGregor said that he was retiring from fighting. McGregor posted a photo with his mother Margaret that he said was from one of his "World title wins" on Twitter on Sunday.

McGregor had earlier tweeted twice about retirement from fighting, both times when he was involved in arguments with the UFC. His last fight came in January against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone which he won and he has since expressed interest to face a number of opponents.

He was tied this summer to face the current top lightweight contender Justin Gaethje. A trilogy fight with Nate Diaz was also something he expressed interest in repeatedly and he also tweeted on May 28 that he had accepted a proposal for a fight against Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) legend Anderson Silva.

UFC President Dana White told reporters after UFC 250 that people have been "acting strangely" lately due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Conor McGregor punches Donald Cerrone in a welterweight bout during UFC246 on January 18, 2020, in Las Vegas. AFP

"Nobody is pressuring anybody to fight," White said. "And if Conor McGregor feels he wants to retire, you know my feelings about retirement -- you should absolutely do it. And I love Conor ... there's a handful of people that have made this really fun for me. And he's one of them."

White had earlier said that the best option for McGregor will be to wait and face the winner of Gaethje's title challenge against Khabib Nurmagomedov.

With a 22-4 record in MMA overall, McGregor has just two losses in the UFC -- against Diaz, which he later avenged in the second fight between the pair, and against Nurmagomedov. In 2016, he beat Eddie Alvarez to win the lightweight belt and thus became the first in the UFC to hold titles in two different weight classes.

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