Kanako Murata talks strawweight title challenge
One of the most exciting new additions to Invicta FC’s women’s strawweight roster will be back in action on Friday night (local time) as she attempts to build on a stunning promotional debut.
Kanako Murata made a massive statement when she submitted Brazilian Liana Pirosin courtesy of a first-round rear-naked choke at Invicta FC 35 in June.
The 26-year-old Matsuyama native will look to spoil the party once again when she steps into the cage against American Emily Ducote. The bout is set for Invicta FC 38, which takes place at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, and will have the vacant strawweight title on the line,
“To me, it’s a privilege to be fighting for the title in only my third fight in America and second in Invicta. I am excited, but I don’t want to get too overwhelmed by my excitement because I want to channel it the right way in order for me to focus on my fight,” Murata said.
A good year
It has been a good year for Murata. She kicked off her campaign with a second-round submission win over Saray Orozco at Rizin 15. The Japanese grappling wizard then followed it up with a quick victory over Pirosin nearly two months later.
Murata says she is in peak condition heading into Friday’s title tilt,
“I’ve trained hard for this fight. I’ve worked morning and night on my fitness and getting strong,” she shared. “When I jump in the cage, I’m really, really hungry. I want to win. I won’t let someone take anything away from me that is mine. At the end of the day, whoever’s the most hungry will get it.”
Murata is confident in her ability to match her opponent when it comes to strength and tenacity, but the real question is whether she can overcome the American Top Team OKC representative’s experience on the championship stage,
“My trainer and I are working on techniques. I’m not going to tell everyone (what we plan to do) but yeah, we’ve watched her. All I can say is she’s aggressive with very good technique and experience,” she said of her foe.
Ducote had a decent two-year run in Bellator, participating in eight bouts that included two failed title bids against Ilima-Lei Macfarlane. Murata says she has been working on all aspects of her game ahead of the title match,
“I am well prepared for whatever she wants to bring to the fight this Friday. I am working on my boxing, my ground game, and my submissions. That is my first priority, especially she is also good on the ground. Even if it goes five rounds, I am ready,” she stated.
Murata is relishing the prospect of drawing Ducote into the trenches, and she hopes her adversary is at her best so they can deliver a bout for the ages.
“I hope she is well-prepared for this fight. I hope she is ready like I am. We’re going to have a really good, hard fight, and I’m coming for that belt,” she declared.