This Saturday in Singapore, Holly Holm takes on Bethe Correia in the main event of UFC Fight Night 111. The stakes are high in the bantamweight division– Holm finds herself in desperate need of a win to break her current three-fight losing skid, and Correia gets the opportunity to take out a former champion. What must each fighter do secure the win?
– Use her range: Holm is coming in with a three-inch height and five-inch reach advantage. Holm should use this against her shorter and stockier opponent– keeping Correia at the end of her combinations where she can hunt for the head kick.
– Mix it up: Corriea isn’t primarily known as a counter striker, but if Holm is rushing in with the same combination over and over again then she may able to time her right hand. Holm should mix it up and make use of her full striking arsenal– low kicks, body kicks, high kicks, punches, elbows, etc.
– Fight at her pace: Holm has all the skills to become a champion in MMA again. Starting with this fight, Holly will need to be in tune and dictating the pace. Correia has proven to be durable, so instead of rushing in to get a finish early she should pick Correia apart from the outside and find her opening in the later rounds.
– Get inside the pocket: With a significant height and reach disadvantage for Bethe, her best bet is going to be working from the inside. If she can get in close to Holly she can tie up with her inattempt to negotiate some of Holm’s reach. From there she can use some dirty boxing to short punches and elbows to tag Holm early on. It is easier said than done, but if Correia is on the outside she will not be able to hit Holly when Holly can hit her.
– Look for the takedown: Correia isn’t known for her grappling pedigree, but she has looked fairly comfortable working from the ground when she’s had to. In her last fight against Marion Reneau, Correia even landed two nicely-timed double leg takedowns. This would be a wise strategy to employ against Holm. Correia should try to frustrate Holm–in the clinch she can look for trips and transitions to single and double legs.
– Defense: Correia likes to get into brawls, and she isn’t afraid to “take one to give one”. Being that this is the second scheduled five-round fight of Correia’s career, she should tighten her defense early so that she doesn’t absorb too much damage should it go int the later rounds. Looking back at Correia’s last fight against Reneau again– Bethe was caught and rocekd by a high head kick in the third round. Holly is arguably the best kicker in the division, so Bethe should be wise to Holm’s kicks, keeping her hands up and chin tucked.
UFC Fight Night 111 takes place at the Singapore Indoor Stadium in Singapore on June 17th,
What do you think each fighter needs to do to reach victory?