The next women’s flyweight title challenger plans to play to her strengths against Valentina Shevchenko. Paired up against ‘Bullet’ for the biggest of her career at UFC 275, Taila Santos does not intend to waste such a rare opportunity.
In an interview with Combate, the Brazilian had no issue revealing what her strategy will be ahead of their fight. Although Taila acknowledges that Shevchenko’s grappling is good, the challenger claims to see weaknesses in Valentina’s game that she could explore should the fight hit the mat.
“I believe I’m taking this fight to the ground.” Santos said. “Valentina is a very tough fighter. Her strong suit is in the striking game, but I believe I can be successful on the ground.”
“She’s very tough on the feet.” Taila continued, “She has defeated some really tough fighters. She’s also really smart, but I believe I’ll find success on the ground. That’s where I feel super comfortable. I come from a muay thai school, so I also feel great on the feet. However, I see her weaknesses on the ground, so I believe that’s the area where I’ll find success in the fight.”
Currently on a four-fight winning streak, Santos (19-1) defeated Molly McCann, Gillian Robertson, Roxanne Modafferi and Joane Wood in her most recent outings, which secured her title shot. The 28-year-old’s last and sole loss happened in February 2019, when she dropped a split decision to Mara Romero Borella.
Now, Santos is expected to take on Shevchenko at UFC 275’s co-main event, on June 11, in Singapore. The card is scheduled to be headlined by a light heavyweight title fight between the champion, Glover Teixeira and challenger Jiri Prochazka.