Julie Mezabarba thought her kickboxing would be superior to the Muay Thai of Stamp Fairtex. She was wrong, and lost every single round at ONE: ‘NextGen’ last Friday.
Stamp wasn’t surprised. But she does believe that the Brazilian made a big mistake by trying to engage in a striking contest with her,
“The fight was in MMA, not Muay Thai. But my skill set is Muay Thai, and Julie’s is kickboxing. And Julie was trying to fight kickboxing with me,” she said.
Basically the Brazilian was allowing Stamp to stay in her comfort zone and there was only ever going to be one winner once that happened,
“I was using my Muay Thai with her because I know that I am better than her. And when I was doing Muay Thai, I knew she couldn’t compete with me and that she was going to lose.”
You would think that armed with prior knowledge of Stamp’s fighting style and accomplishments in the world of Muay Thai the Brazilian would have been aware of the risk of making this a striking match. But Mezabarba did not start trying to get the fight down until the third round and by then it was too late,
“That’s why she was trying to take me down in the last round,” Stamp explains.
In the quarter final she fought armbar specialist Alyona Rassohyna and was well prepared for the Ukrainian’s submission game. But for the Mezabarba fight she was able to focus on her obvious strengths,
“I prepared more on my striking game, compared to Alyona Rassohyna. Julie is quite good at kickboxing, so I focused more on my striking rather than my ground game.”
If you have made an MMA career as a kickboxing specialist it is difficult to become a grappler at a few weeks notice. So it is understandable that Mezabarba decided to try and turn it into a striking match even if it didn’t work out well for the Brazilian.
It is a mistake that Ritu Phogat definitely won’t be making when she meets Stamp in the final on December 3rd. That fight is exactly a month away and that Thai will be working hard on her takedown defense to prepare for the wrestling veteran.