ONE: Mei Yamaguchi eyeing statement win over Jomary Torres to spark title hopes
A pair of painful setbacks never discouraged Mei Yamaguchi from reaching her ultimate goal of becoming a world champion.
If anything, the heartbreaks inside the cage have made her more determined in her drive to be the best.
The Japanese veteran gets her chance to redeem herself again when she takes on Filipino warrior Jomary Torres in ONE: Destiny of Champions on Friday in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Against Torres, Yamaguchi, a former world title contender, won’t be satisfied with just a victory.
“My dream, goal, and vision to have a world title wrapped around my waist are still alive,” Yamaguchi said
“This is another step, or another journey, to elevate my status as a contender for the title.”
The 35-year-old Yamaguchi had been to a title fight before and lost twice to undefeated star Angela Lee for the ONE women’s atomweight belt.
Yamaguchi is aiming for a spectacular showing against Torres, a kind of performance that would propel her back to a title shot.
“I think it’s a really great chance to show my skills and make a statement that I want to fight for the title. A finish will make it very clear that I deserve to be next in line,” she said.
But it’s easier said than done with Torres also eager to show that she’s worthy to be in the same echelon as the best female fighters in ONE Championship especially after coming off her first loss.
“She is strong and physical. I know Jomary Torres because she is good at defying odds,” the Tokyo native said. “She has beaten the likes of Rika Ishige and April Osenio. Definitely, my opponent is so dangerous.”
“My story will not end here. I don’t want to be complacent in this fight. From start to finish, I have to be spectacular,” Yamaguchi added. “Like what I’ve said, I want to be a champion. If I wish to become a champion, I have to beat my opponent in decisive fashion.”