Angela Lee wants to make statement in ONE return: ‘Mothers are strongest people’
SINGAPORE–ONE women’s atomweight champion Angela Lee is eager to send a message in her return to the cage after being away for two years to focus on motherhood.
More than just proving that she’s still the top fighter in her division despite the long absence, Lee wants to showcase the strength of being a mother and an elite athlete at the same time.
“It’s been crazy journey these past two years but I’ve worked harder than ever. I definitely want to make this statement to show women and mothers are the strongest people in planet,” Lee said on Wednesday during the ONE X press conference.
Lee, who gave birth to a baby girl in April 2021, is up against a tough contender in Stamp Fairtex, who earned the right to challenge for the belt after ruling the Grand Prix in December. They headline the main event of ONE Championship’s 10th anniversary event on Saturday here.
“Stamp is by far one of most credentialed fighter that I’ve fought. She is a two-time world champion and kickboxing and Muay Thai. She’s been doing this for a long time and she’s developed really fast in MMA,” said Lee of her challenger.
“I’m very impressed in how she was able to work their way through the Grand Prix tournament. I kept my eye on her.
Lee, who last fought in October 2019 submitting Xiong Jing Nan with a rear-naked choke, said she underwent a longer and tougher training camp this time to prepare for her title defense, made trickier by also having to tend to her duties as a mother to Ava Marie.
“I’ve been training for five months now, that’s like double the amount of time that I usually get for fight camp. Trying to figure out the schedule to train and with the baby, it’s challenging but I’m really lucky that I have an amazing family and support team and I’m able to do what I love to do and and be a mom.”
Against Stamp, Lee recognizes the Thai star’s advantage in striking being a Muay Thai and kickboxing world champion but she thought it was “wrong” to brand their title fight as just a “ striker versus grappler” kind of clash.
“This is an MMA fight and we’re both mixed martial artist. Stamp has evolved a lot and I don’t see her as a striker only but I do understand that where her strength lies but I know that she’s coming into this fight as a well rounded mixed martial artist,” Lee said.
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