Female bantamweight prospect Ketlen Vieira is not one to refuse a challenge. Paired up against Irene Aldana at UFC 245, for her first fight in 21 months, the Brazilian feels ready to come back after struggling with injuries and finances. However, should something happen to the title fight scheduled for the same night, the 28-year-old makes herself available as a short notice replacement.
In an interview with Ag Fight, Ketlen says she is ready to take on either the champion, Amanda Nunes, or challenger and former featherweight title holder Germaine de Randamie, claiming it would be a similar stylistic matchup to the one she already has lined up against Aldana.
“If (the title fight) falls through, I’m ready (to be a replacement),” Vieira said. “Especially because it won’t be so different from my current opponent, they are both strikers, so it would all remain in the same realm. (If the opportunity arises) I would accept it, for sure.”
Although Vieira volunteered to be a replacement for the title fight, she also makes it clear that is Aldana who has her full attention, but Vieira also believes that a win over Irene would put herself in line for a title shot after UFC 245.
“I’m the number two fighter in the rankings,” she said. “Amanda will be fighting the number one fighter on the same night. If I win, I don’t see anyone ahead of me. I will become number one. Of course every athlete wants to be the champion, but I’m focused on Aldana. To me, she is the one who has the belt.”
Before being sidelined due to injury, Ketlen Vieira (10-0) was on a 4-0 run in the UFC, with wins over Kelly Faszholz, Ashlee-Evans Smith, and former title challengers Sara McMann and Cat Zingano.
Now, Ketlen is expected to meet Irene Aldana at UFC 245, in Las Vegas, Nevada, on December 14. Other than the women’s bantamweight title fight, the card will also feature a welterweight fight for the belt between champ Kamaru Usman and former interim title holder Colby Covington, and a featherweight title bout between the champion, Max Holloway, and top contender Alexander Volkanovski.