MANILA, Philippines – Miesha Tate expressed her disappointment over the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s decision to pair women’s bantamweight titleholder Ronda Rousey with former boxing world champion Holly Holm in the main event of UFC 195 on January 3, 2016 (January 2 in US).
Tate (17-5), the only woman that has made it out of the first round versus Rousey, became the No.1 contender after earning a unanimous decision victory over Jessica Eye this past July.
Following her 34-second demolition of Bethe Correia at this month’s UFC 190 pay-per-view event in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, company officials announced that Rousey would meet Miesha Tate for the third time.
However, the world’s premier mixed martial arts promotion apparently opted to go a different direction and chose Holm as Rousey’s next foe.
“I am extremely disappointed how all the events unfolded this morning regarding news that I will not be fighting Ronda Rousey. I was told after my last win that I had earned the title shot,” Tate wrote on Instagram.
I am extremely disappointed how all the events unfolded this morning regarding news that I will not be fighting Ronda Rousey. I was told after my last win that I had earned the title shot. I've already begun training for Rousey and I was shocked to hear the announcement this morning. I regret this for not only myself, but my team, sponsors and the fans who like me believed my next fight was for the title. A photo posted by Miesha Tate (@mieshatate) on Aug 21, 2015 at 1:15pm PDT
In an interview with LA Times’ Lance Pugmire, UFC president Dana White justified the organization’s call to pit Rousey against Holm, who occupies the No.9 spot in the female 135-pound division’s rankings.
“We were talking about Miesha from the start, then as we started sitting around we were saying, ‘Everyone has seen the Miesha fight already.’ A third fight in a rivalry usually comes after the stuff we’d see in [Arturo] Gatti-[Micky] Ward. With Miesha, the result has been the same twice. Everyone’s already seen that fight,” he said.
Tate crossed paths with Rousey twice, dropping the Strikeforce women’s bantamweight belt via first-round submission in March 2012 before tapping out once more in the third round of their December 2013 rematch.
The 29-year-old native of Tacoma, Washington revealed that she had already begun preparations to face her rival.
“I've already begun training for Rousey and I was shocked to hear the announcement this morning. I regret this for not only myself, but my team, sponsors and the fans who like me believed my next fight was for the title,” Tate disclosed.
Tate does not have an opponent for her next outing at the moment, but she conveyed her interest in locking horns with Invicta FC featherweight champion Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino at a 140-pound catchweight.
Justino (14-1, 1 NC) is currently planning a drop to 140 pounds later this year, with the desire of eventually challenging Rousey in 2016.
“There are two sides to the coin. I’m not sure losing another fight to Ronda so soon would be good for Miesha. She’s not going anywhere. I think she’ll be fine,” White assured. – Rappler.com