The first challenger to take the UFC women’s flyweight champion, Valentina Shevchenko, to a split decision is happy with her performance. Although Taila Santos was unable to eek out a win against ‘Bullet’ at UFC 275, she was positively surprised with the way things happened in their match.
In an interview with Combate, Santos explained how she expected a tougher outing against Shevchenko, which is why she was surprised to see how well she was doing in the title fight. Because of the result, Taila walked out of the Octagon with what she considers a positive outcome, having confirmed that Valentina is not an unbeatable fighter even in her prime.
“I was surprised by how easy it was. I was expecting the fight to be much harder in some areas. That’s what I wanted to show, though. That’s she’s not this monster, this unbeatable girl that the other girls were thinking. I respected her, she has had the belt for years now, so I prepared really well. I was ready to solve the puzzle.”
“I was surprised, because I thought it was going to be hard to take her down.” Taila said. “I thought it would be hard to impose my will, because she’s a really smart girl. In the end, it was easier than I had anticipated. When we went to the fence, I was able to take her down really easily. I was able to take her back and dominate her. That’s what surprised me. I expected more hardships. but in the end it was easier.”
The loss snapped a four-fight winning streak for Santos (19-2). During this time, the 28-year-old scored wins over Joanne Wood, Roxanne Modafferi, Gillian Robertson and Molly McCann in order to secure her title shot. Before that, the Brazilian dropped a split decision to Mara Romero Borella, in 2019.
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