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Nursulton Ruziboev wants Gerald Meerschaert next ‘to show that Uzbek fighters are not weak’

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. – Nursulton Ruziboev wants to avenge Makhmud Muradov’s loss to Gerald Meerschaert.

Ruziboev (36-8-2 MMA, 2-0 UFC) recorded his 10th straight first-round finish when he stopped Sedriques Dumas by TKO Saturday at UFC on ESPN 54.

He then proceeded to call out Meerschaert, who was responsible for handing Muradov his first octagon loss in an upset finish in August 2021. Ruziboev aims to get one back for his fellow Uzbek fighter.

“There’s only three Uzbek fighters in the UFC and one of them was beaten by Gerald Meerschaert, so I want to revenge that loss, and I want to show that Uzbek fighters are not weak,” Ruziboev told MMA Junkie and other reporters through an interpreter.

“I am training with (Andre) Petroski, I am training with Joe Pyfer, and those guys have been (in) there with him. I have them as sparring partners. I have them as books of knowledge that I can read before I go into that fight.”

Ruziboev’s finish didn’t come without controversy. The fight-ending sequence occurred after Dumas rushed into Ruziboev’s extended fingers, causing him to get poked in the eye. Dumas grabbed his eye while turning away, but couldn’t get referee Vitor Ribeiro to pause the fight, leading Ruziboev to rush in with punches.

Ruziboev disputes any controversy surrounding the finish.

“As far as I can remember, I got him with the uppercut first,” Ruziboev said. “Once I got him with the uppercut, he already went for his eye to show that his eye was hurting. Then, as I was distancing myself away from it, maybe there was some of sort of a slight thing, but it wasn’t something that I noticed. I know that I got him with the uppercut first, and that’s exactly when he went for his eye.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC on ESPN 54.

Sedriques Dumas UFC on ESPN 54 official weigh-ins

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Nursulton Ruziboev UFC on ESPN 54 official weigh-ins

Nursulton Ruziboev

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Nursulton Ruziboev vs. Sedriques Dumas faceoff UFC on ESPN 54

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) enters the Octagon to…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) enters the Octagon to fight Sedriques Dumas (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) fights Sedriques Dumas (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques Dumas (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques Dumas (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques Dumas (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques Dumas (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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MMA: UFC Fight Night - Atlantic City - Ruziboev vs Dumas

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques…

Mar 30, 2024; Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA; Nursulton Ruziboev (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Sedriques Dumas (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Boardwalk Hall. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

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Nursulton Ruziboev def. Sedriques Dumas at UFC on ESPN 54 Scorecard

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Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie