Chiara will bring the fight to Karolina
“THE show must got on!”
Spoken like a true champion, I’d say of Chiara Penco who just brushed off a major disruption ahead of her title fight with the USA’s Cheyanne Vlismas.
Vlismas was set to take on the EFC’s strawweight champion from Italy this weekend at EFC76 in Pretoria in the main event. However, Vlismas has withdrawn due to medical complications in the lead-up to the fight.
The American’s diagnosis is unclear, as her blood samples are still being tested. The opportunity then opened for Cheyanne’s last opponent, Karolina Wojcik who stepped up on short notice to impress the fans.
“Of course it is a change. It changes the game plan and the feel about the fight. But Karolina is a warrior and I so much appreciate her taking the fight, this is what we do ... The show must go on,” says Penco who made history by becoming the EFC’s first strawweight champion after overcoming the legend and now retired, Danella Eliasov, this year.
Cheyanne and Karolina (3-1) put on a show in their fight at EFC74, and the fight ended on a controversial note as many fans thought that the Polish fighter stole the show after the three rounds.
However, Cheyanne got the W. “I have a few doubts, that Cheyanne won that fight,” says Chiara “... but it is what it is.”
“I think that Cheyanne (1-1) had a bit of favouring in her last match at the end, as Karolina really put up a good fight and nobody would have said anything if she took the W instead. So I definitely respect Karolina, like I respect anybody who enters the cage with me.”
Karolina is an explosive entertaining fighter who debuted in the Fight of the Night against Vlismas at EFC74.
Earning her the respect and loyalty of EFC fans around the world. She vowed to be back, to show her devastating KO power that she has become renowned for. And she could not have asked for a better opportunity than a shot at gold against a lady not only known for her looks, but also her endurance, work ethic and all-round game.
Over a gruelling four rounds Chiara (4-0) maintained her 100 percent submission rate by fracturing her opponent’s face with strikes and eventually winning the championship against Danella Eliasov by submission in round four in a bout that was highly impressive, especially considering the fact that she dominated the South African on the highveld, a feat that needs to be commended considering the challenges that come with fighting at altitude.
Prior to this fight, the part-time model added another W to her name against Elena Andruschenko via submission in the first.
“Coming back to Africa really gives me a magical feeling ... The crowd and people are amazing,” says Chiara.
“I have been preparing for longer than her, so I assume I’ll be walking in more prepared. This is if Karolina has not secretly been training on Mount Everest (laughs)!”
Considering the two fighters’ styles, plenty of fans on social media have tipped this fight to be more exciting than the original one.
Taking nothing away from Cheyanne’s ability, but these two main carders are fully-fledged go-forward fighters with strong boxing ability.
“I was going to bring the fight on Cheyanne, now I am going to bring it on Karolina, she is tough and will push. I like that. Remember that there will always be a show when I fight. I’m an entertainer as well,” says Chiara.
“I am better than Chiara in every department,” says Karolina.
“Her strongest points must be her good looks,” she adds cheekily.
The fight will take be the main event at EFC76.
EFC76 Time Square is presented by Betxchange.com, and takes place tomorrow live from Time Square, Menlyn Maine, Pretoria. Tickets are on sale at computicket.com, and the five main card bouts will be broadcast delayed live on SABC 3.
This copy is co-sponsored by The Capital (Hotels and Apartments).
WILL IT be another happy day for Chiara Penco at EFC76 in Pretoria tomorrow? | Supplied