Invicta FC Champ Livia Renata Souza Plans to Defend, but Wants UFC Title Shot

January 15, 2016

Though she only fought once in 2015, strawweight standout Livia Renata Souza made it count.

In April of last year, Souza defeated Katja Kankaanpaa to become the Invicta FC strawweight champion. Not only did the victory gain Souza her first major MMA championship, she feels it was a watershed bout for her on many levels.

“I’m proud to have fought in America and proved (to) you all my potential,” Souza told MMAWeekly.com. “(The win over Kankaanpaa) erased the impression (of me being a) newcomer and (helped) me establish myself as a winning athlete and able to overcome and win (over) any weight (class) fighter.

“It was a tough fight and only strengthened me by the way it happened and how it ended, and also because it is the first time I fought four rounds.”

For Souza, being a champion in Invicta is a big responsibility, but she is more than willing to handle everything that comes with holding the belt.

Livia Renata Souza“It is a pride, a burden that I always wanted,” said Souza. “I was born (for this) and I am able to (bear the) load, and you cannot turn your back for your destiny.”

Following a cancellation of her originally scheduled first title defense last year, Souza (8-0) will finally put her 115-pound title on the line at Invicta FC 15 on Saturday in Costa Mesa, Calif., against fellow undefeated standout DeAnna Bennett (8-0) in the evening’s co-main event. The night’s main event features featherweight champion Cris Cyborg defending against Daria Ibragimova.

RELATED > DeAnn Bennett Wants Invicta Championship More Than Anything, Ever

“It is a simple strategy, just be efficient in my strengths and will be enough to win,” said Souza. “(Bennett) comes from controversial (decision) victories, but I do not worry because (the outcome of) this fight will never come in the decision of the judges.”

Looking ahead to her 2016, Souza is driven to establish herself as the best fighter in the world in any promotion at any weight class.

“Well, my first goal is to defend the belt in Invicta FC, prove to the world my talents and my evolution, show the reason (I am) being the (champion at 115 pounds),” said Souza. “After that, I do not see more goals in the organization and I intend to fight among the world’s best (and get a) UFC title shot.

“I would like to thank the journalists, the Brazilian and American fans, my team, coaches and sponsors. (Check out) this fantastic event, because it will be on fire.”

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