Mixed martial arts: Angela Lee and Mei Yamaguchi promise exciting rematch

Singapore's Angela Lee (left) and Japan's Mei Yamaguchi at The Cathay on May 5, 2016.
Singapore's Angela Lee (left) and Japan's Mei Yamaguchi at The Cathay on May 5, 2016. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters Angela Lee and Mei Yamaguchi both vowed that their rematch here on Nov 24 will show fans how much both fighters have improved.

Speaking to local and international media in a conference call on Thursday (Sept 14), Lee, who is of Korean and Singaporean descent, said: "Our first fight was one of the best and this fight will be no different - this time round, Mei and I have been training hard to improve. I doubt this will go to a five-round decision."

Yamaguchi added: "I know we're going to exchange a lot of punches and a lot of technique ... (my training) has a good mix of boxing, jiu-jitsu and MMA and Angela Lee is becoming a total fighter.

"So fans can expect not only a lot of moves on the ground, but on feet too."

Lee, 21, made history last May by becoming the youngest MMA world champion when she defeated Yamaguchi to win the inaugural One Championship atomweight title at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

Since then, she has defended her title twice and remains unbeaten with an 8-0 win-loss career record.

The 34-year-old Yamaguchi's record stands at 16-10, with her latest result being a win over Taiwan's Jenny Huang in June.

At last year's inaugural title fight, Lee had defeated the Japanese via unanimous decision by the judges after five rounds.

On Nov 24 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, however, Lee believes she will enter the cage armed with better skills and a stronger mind.

"I trained all year round working to improve the different areas of my fighting ... A lot of improvements have been made in the mental and emotional aspect, I've had time to mature a bit more as a fighter and deal with those nerves a lot better,"she said.

"I think that's going to be the biggest change, and it's going to make all the difference in my performance."

Another championship fight will feature on the Nov 24 fight card, with welterweight champion Ben Askren to feature in his last fight against former lightweight champion Shinya Aoki.