Fritz Biagtan has better insight than most with regard to the pivotal women’s atomweight encounter slated on the main card of ONE Fight Night 9: Nong-O vs. Haggerty in Bangkok, Thailand this April 22.
The 27-year-old native of Dasmariñas, Cavite is helping Filipina standout Denice Zamboanga prepare for her bout against Julie Mezabarba, and he knows that the Brazilian heroine is a serious threat to his fiancée.
“Julie Mezabarba is a good fighter, she’s well-rounded and a tough one. We’ve studied her skills and all, and we’re taking this fight very seriously,” Biagtan stated.
With a record of 9-4-1 as a mixed martial artist, Mezabarba has been proven to be no slouch of an opponent in her last three outings under the ONE Championship banner.
The Brazilian initially gained traction by putting together an impressive performance in her promotional debut, where she dominated Japanese veteran and former World Title challenger Mei Yamaguchi to cruise to a clear-cut unanimous decision.
Although she lost her next two assignments versus the likes of Stamp Fairtex and Jenelyn Olsim, Mezabarba went the distance with them and made sure that they would have to earn the victory the hard way.
Biagtan conceded that Zamboanga needs to maximize every weapon in her arsenal to offset Mezabarba’s best attributes.
“The only thing we must avoid regarding Julie is her heavy punches and submission attempts. We need to play it smart and be sharp,” he remarked.
On the other hand, Zamboanga is coming off a hard-fought unanimous decision win over China’s Lin Heqin to arrest her two-bout losing skid and restart her ascent to the upper echelon of the division.
“Kid Tornado” didn’t mince words about the progress he sees in the No. 3-ranked atomweight so far.
“Her preparation is good. As one of her coaches, we’re doing our best to get her in the best shape possible. We need to improve her reaction time, counter-attacking, and knockout power,” Biagtan shared.
With ONE Fight Night 9 fast approaching, Biagtan feels confident that “The Menace” can overcome Mezabarba.
“Denice and Julie are both tough fighters, but my prediction is Denice will get the win by knockout or by submission. Worst case, it ends up as a unanimous decision for Denice,” he said.