Bengaluru, November 26: Former two-sport World Champion Stamp Fairtex reckons that Ritu Phogat does not have the slightest of chances to win when they meet at ONE: WINTER WARRIORS next Friday, 3 December.
The Thai mixed martial artist came across a couple of reports where "The Indian Tigress" Phogat stated that Stamp is petrified of her.
Just over a week before they clash in the ONE Women's Atomweight World Grand Prix Championship Final, Stamp refuted those claims, firing back at the Indian wrestling sensation with a stern warning.
"She might think I'm scared of her. But, actually, she's scared of me. If she wasn't, she would not look down on me like that," the 24-year-old with a 7-1 MMA record said.
"I'm not scared at all. Ritu is a normal human, just like me."
Stamp punched her ticket into the final with a dominant performance over Brazilian Julie Mezabarba, while her opponent earned her spot with a victory over Filipina fighter Jenelyn Olsim.
Following Stamp's victory in the main event of ONE: NEXTGEN on 29 October, both athletes stood face-to-face and stared each other in the eyes.
In a subsequent online press conference, the woman who is looking to become the first female Indian MMA World Champion exclaimed that she saw fear in Stamp's eyes, and she does not blame her for being afraid.
Stamp will not let those claims disrupt her training camp. The Fairtex standout knows she will be in for a tough contest against Phogat in the final, but she has also thoroughly studied her antagonist in preparation for this World Title eliminator.
"I've been studying Ritu quite deeply. I've prepared for a long time to fight with her," the Pattaya resident said.
"I think she has only one strength, which is taking her opponent down and taking control of the game. That's it. Her striking is not very good. She has a basic jab and right hand to set up her shots."
Striking may not be Phogat's greatest asset, but it is something Stamp will keep a close eye on. "The Indian Tigress" has looked comfortable in the stand-up department during previous matches against "MMA Sister" Heqin Lin and Meng Bo.
Despite Phogat's improved striking ability, Stamp does not believe "The Indian Tigress" can handle her if the two decide to stay on their feet and trade leather.
However, if the opportunity arises, the former ONE Atomweight Kickboxing and Muay Thai World Champion will not think twice to punish Phogat with her Muay Thai prowess and show the Indian star that she does not fear her at all.
"I think I would like to use my Muay Thai skills to knock her out with my knees or elbows," she said.
"There's a high chance I'll finish her if I hurt her."
Catch these two female combatants in action in the co-main event of ONE: WINTER WARRIORS on Friday, 3 December.
In the meantime, ONE Championship premieres ONE: NEXTGEN III this Friday, 26 November. Indian fans can watch the event on Disney+ Hotstar or Star Sports Select 2 at 6 PM India Standard Time (IST).
Source: Media Release