Mark Hunt's knockout victory over Roy Nelson on Saturday has pushed him to No 5 in the UFC's heavyweight rankings.

Hunt floored the durable Nelson in the second round of their main event bout at UFC Fight Night 52 at the Saitama Super Arena with a well-timed uppercut.

The Kiwi was previously ranked sixth in the division but beating the No 8 Nelson, who has now dropped to ninth, was looked upon fondly by those who vote on the rankings.

After coming through the bout with no injuries, Hunt (10-8-1) demanded a fight in his adopted hometown of Sydney at UFC Fight Night 55 on November 8.


It would be a quick turnaround and the UFC may struggle to book an opponent for the Super Samoan but he made things easier for them overnight by calling out Josh Barnett who has since dropped one place to No 6 in the latest edition of the rankings.

Barnett (33-7) beat Hunt via submission when the pair met in the now-defunct Pride promotion in Japan in 2006.

"I love rematches," Hunt told overseas podcast The MMA Hour. "I've never lost a rematch, Josh Barnett, me and you my friend, we've got a date. He's No 5 in the world, I want to fight guys in the top 10. I'd like to fight and get close to that title shot, That's all I'm interested in; my whole purpose is to fight for the world title."

UFC Fight Night 55 will be headlined by middleweight contenders Luke Rockhold and Michael Bisping but a Hunt v Barnett co-main event would be a massive addition to the card.

It seems unlikely the fight would be booked as Barnett, who was last seen in the UFC in December when he lost via knockout to Travis Browne, has given little indication of when he would like to return to the octagon.

Most of the other top-10 heavyweights are involved in bouts during the next few months.

Hunt returned to Sydney yesterday and will spend a week across the Tasman before heading back to Auckland where he will return to training with coaches Steve Oliver and Lolo Heimuli as he awaits his next engagement.