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Diego Sanchez explains the 'severe' ankle injury that hampered his performance against Jake Ellenberger

Longtime Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) veteran Diego Sanchez, who was forced to bow out of a welterweight war against Matt Hughes in late 2011, almost found himself faced with yet another fight-canceling injury when he "severely sprained" his ankle preparing for Jake Ellenberger.

"The Dream" hung in there, but ended up on the losing end of a unanimous decision against "The Juggernaut" at the UFC on FUEL TV event last Wednesday night (Feb. 15, 2012) at the Omaha Civic Auditorium in Omaha, Nebraska.

Now, Sanchez details the ankle injury that hampered his headlining performance during the UFC on FUEL TV post-fight show:

"I had a lot of obstacles to overcome coming into this fight. I really severely sprained my ankle three weeks before the fight. I had pulled out of the Matt Hughes fight with a broken hand and I got a family to take care of. I refused to pull out of the fight and I just did what I could do. I iced it, I elevated it, I taped it, trained as much as I could and came into the fight and I went to battle. It wasn't that [the ankle] bothered me, it was okay, I had an ankle brace on it and a little tape, but I didn't have the proper training I could have had if I would have been at 100-percent. I didn't get a run, I didn't get a sprint. I couldn't even jump rope. I basically just had to work around the injury and do what I could do and prepare and I came in as the best possible Sanchez I could be. I gave it my all and I came close to getting it there at the end."

Hear more from Sanchez on his fight against Ellenberger, after the jump.

Full results and recap of UFC on FUEL TV: "Sanchez vs. Ellenberger" here and here.

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