News broke yesterday that Miesha Tate will be making her return to competition this summer when she takes on Marion Reneau on July 17, and the former bantamweight champion is looking to reclaim the gold.
Tate retired from MMA in 2016 after losing a unanimous decision to Raquel Pennington at UFC 205, a bout drawn from losing her belt to current champion Amanda Nunes. At just 30 years old, Tate’s exit from the sport was surprising although Tate had always denied his interest in returning to competition, the former champion never closed the door to a possible return. Now Tate says the time has come for his comeback.
“I’m so excited, I really am. There’s a fire that’s been kindled, ”Tate said on her Spectacle SiriusXM. “My heart is completely full of passion. I feel totally invigorated. When you know, you know, and I just know. I have always been that person to lead with my heart and do what I feel my calling is in life and that has never cheated me. I have been a person who can change direction very quickly and not be afraid to do so. I dive straight in if I feel like it’s right and that’s what I’m here to do.
“Sport calls me. Like, let’s not like it. I feel like it called me and now is the time to answer.
Since retiring in 2016, Tate has been very busy. She had two children, joined ONE Championship as vice president and moved to Singapore. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has led Tate to return to the United States where she says she is training at Xtreme Couture again. When the decision to return was made, Tate said the UFC gifted him with Reneau and that’s how the fight broke out.
“That was what the UFC said was available and I was like, ‘That’s fine with me,’” Tate explained. “It’s been four years since I fought. I think Marion Reneau, she is solid in all areas. She has that triangular Sara McMann choke. She is dangerous from below, she can strike well and it is her fight for retirement. So I guess when they asked her about it, she was very excited…
“I think Marion Reneau is great and when you know it’s your last fight, there’s going to be a lot of fire in there, a lot of passion because she’s obviously going to want to win. She’s going to put whatever she’s left in the gas tank because she’s not saving for the next fight. It’s hat tip, it’s the final countdown for her, so I know she’s really going to bring it. And for me, I have a lot to prove. I’ve got to shake up the five-year-olds and go over there and have a great performance and win and kick off this second part of my career.
And Tate does not intend to be raced on her return as well. The former champion is still only 34 and says she’s coming back with her eyes riveted on the belt, especially if that means she can crack the woman who took her belt.
“I have six fights on the contract, I have two years that I know for sure I want to dedicate to the sport,” Tate said. “But look, anything can happen with one fight. I’ll be honest, I really don’t know what to expect. That’s what is so exciting for me… But I can tell you, for the next two years, it’s my plan, to be heavily involved in the sport. Obviously, I want to become a champion again …
“I would love to bring this one back. I would love to fight again (Amanda Nunes) because I know I have the style to beat her. I’m not going to take anything away from him at all. She’s a scary woman and she hits like a man. I know it. I went with her and saw what she’s been up to since. But I know I have the style to beat her.
Although Tate will be competing in the UFC, according to ONE CEO Chatri Sityodtong, Tate remains “a part of the ONE family” and he has shown his full support for his return to competition.
Return. Former bantamweight champion Miesha Tate is back and will face Marion Reneau at the UFC event on July 17.
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Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow.
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