SOUTH Coast UFC star Alex Volkanovski is in hospital in Chile after falling ill with a blood infection on his way back home to Australia.
Volkanovski, a former Warilla-Lake South Gorilla, was due to land in Sydney International Airport at 9.40am on Wednesday with coach Jo Lopez but was stopped from boarding his connecting flight from Chile on Tuesday afternoon.
"Upon leaving the hotel in Rio de Janeiro at approximately 2pm on Monday, Alex complained of sore feet, redness of his left foot and feeling unwell," his manager Rhys Dal Cin said.
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"Upon beginning the journey home to Australia, Alex's condition worsened during the flight."
He was suffering a fever and increased swelling of the foot and leg.
Doctors assess him upon landing at Santiago, Chile.
"After initial examination, Alex was admitted to hospital for further tests," Mr Dal Cin said.
"Alex is being treated for a type of blood infection. His expected release from hospital has not been determined.
"A full report on his condition will be provided at a suitable time when all information has been communicated by medical staff.
"Alex is in good spirits."
His wife Emma, told the Mercury she wished she could jump on a flight to Chile but would wait by the phone for test results.
Hundreds of Illawarra fans packed pubs on Sunday to watch the home-town hero's unanimous decision win over Brazilian legend Jose Aldo in Rio on Sunday.
He won all three rounds on all three judges scorecards to silence a parochial home crowd and hand the future hall-of-famer a defeat in the penultimate bout of his storied career.
The 30-year-old Shellharbour products leg kicks and superior work rate proved the story of the bout, out-landing Aldo in significant strikes 95-29.
Volkanovski's next bout was highly tipped to be for the featherweight title but news reports today suggest he has been overlooked as Max Holloway set to face Frankie Edgar at UFC 240.
As Volkanovski told the crowd after his Mother's Day victory, he should be the man for the job.
"Now, let's get to business," Volkanovski said in the Octagon post-Aldo domination.
"Hey, I'm next in line [for the title], one hundred percent. I'm the only one who is undefeated in the top-3 now. I should be ranked No. 1."