Twenty-three-year-old atomweight rising star Denice “The Menace” Zamboanga of the Philippines wants to keep her weapons sharp and her skills on point before she eventually faces reigning ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion “Unstoppable” Angela Lee sometime after the situation with Covid-19 eases.
The undefeated Filipina has since decided to take a much-needed tune up bout against Thailand’s Watsapinya “Dream Girl” Kaewkhong. The two women warriors will meet in a three round mixed martial arts clash at ONE: A NEW BREED, a live, closed-door, audience-free event scheduled for Friday, 28 August in Bangkok, Thailand.
“The Menace” couldn’t be more excited to return to action, and once again feel the rush of competition at the highest level.
“I’m finally getting back in the ring and I’m excited. I can’t wait to step inside the ring again, and I can’t wait to raise my hand, and carry the Filipino flag back home with the win,” said Zamboanga.
“I think this fight will really help me stay active and to get even more ready for the title fight. I just want to show people that I really deserve to fight Angela Lee. I want to make history and become the first Filipino women’s atomweight world champion.”
Zamboanga earned her shot at the ONE World Title by virtue of a pair of impressive victories in the ONE Circle. She made her promotional debut in late 2019, defeating highly-regarded Malaysian upstart Jihin Radzuan, and then followed up that victory with a shocking one-sided win over Japanese veteran Mei Yamaguchi.
After her victory over Yamaguchi, ONE Championship Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong gave the green light to position Zamboanga as next in line for the opportunity to knock Lee off her throne.
Against Kaewkhong, however, Zamboanga faces a Thai national judo champion, who has vowed to derail the Filipina’s journey to the championship. Despite this, Zamboanga is fully focused on victory, and is confident she will leave the arena with her hand raised.
“I saw a few clips of her fights, but those were a long time ago. I don’t know how much she has improved since then, so I guess we will see once we both step inside the ring,” said Zamboanga.
“It really doesn’t matter to me how good or how strong she is. My only goal is to get the win, and nothing will stop me from achieving that.”
Zamboanga recently left the Fairtex team in Pattay to pursue her own ventures. Fortunately for her, she has been accompanied by her older brother Drex, a Philippine MMA Champion, and their friend Fritz Biagtan all this time. Together, the three have continued to train in Bangkok.
Zamboanga’s brother is also making his promotional debut at ONE: A NEW BREED, which makes this card extra special for the siblings.
“Leaving Fairtex in the middle of camp has somehow disrupted my preparations, but it hasn’t stopped me from training. My brother (Drex) and friend Fritz are helping me everyday, teaching me new techniques. They help me a lot, and motivate me to give it my all everytime we train,” said Zamboanga.
“I can’t wait to perform on the same night as my brother. To all our fans, thank you for the constant support. Pray for us to emerge victorious this Friday. Love to everyone.”
ONE: A NEW BREED brings together the absolute best in local and international martial arts talent.
The headline bout features ONE Atomweight Muay Thai World Champion Stamp Fairtex of Thailand, who defends her title against promotional newcomer Allycia Hellen Rodrigues of Brazil.
In the co-main event, Muay Thai superstars Rodlek PK.Saenchaimuaythai gym and Kulabdam Sor. Jor. Piek Uthai square off in the final round of the ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai Tournament. The winner will go on to challenge ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Champion Nong-O Gaiyanghadao at a later date.
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