After having to drop out of her previous Combate Americas fight six months earlier due to injury, atomweight Kyra Batara was once again forced out of a bout with the promotion, but this time due to weight issues.
This past February, Batara was slated to take on Vanessa Rico Fernandez in the main event of Combate Americas 11, when she missed weight for the first time in her pro MMA career, and her opponent refused to find a mutually beneficial solution.
“It was a really frustrating experience,” Batara told MMAWeekly.com. “It was my first time that I had a fight cancelled due to being overweight. I’ve always been super-professional about that. When the scale beat me it was just devastating for me. It was something I never wanted to happen.
“Combate even offered to switch opponents and give (Fernandez) a 105er and give me the girl who also couldn’t make weight (on the same card), but she wasn’t having it. She said if I was one ounce over that she wasn’t going to take the fight, so they scratched the fight there and then.”
Five months later, Batara is ready to finally have her bout with Fernandez. And while Fernandez is clearly bringing animosity into the bout, Batara is more concerned with cementing her own place in Combate than getting into a grudge match.
“I’ll say (there is bad blood between us) for the hype of the fight, but I don’t care,” said Batara. “(Fernandez) can do whatever and say whatever she wants. I’m going to go in there and handle business just like I always do.
“This time around she’s not going to have any excuses. I know I’m going to in there at 110%. I’m going to go in there on weight, ready to go and ready to get that win.”
On July 27 in Miami, Florida, At Combate Clasico in a main card 105-pound bout, Batara (5-4) believes she’ll be more than ready to handle what Fernandez (2-2) brings to the fight due to previous experience against a similar opponent.
“If anything, I’m already prepared for this and have already fought this before,” Batara said. “She is very similar to Jenny Silverio; she was a second strip purple belt and had a very strong Tae Kwon Do background as well; and with Vanessa I think she’s almost less of the opponent than Jenny was.”
“I am not going to underestimate (Fernandez) by any means, but I’m going to go in there and I’m going to prove to her this is why I was telling her why I wanted someone top ranked and what she’s bringing to the table is not going to faze me, and prove why I deserve to be top ranked at the top in Combate Americas.”
At something of a crossroads in her career, Batara is focused solely on July 27, and will take whatever happens afterwards when it comes.
“Right now this is my last fight with Combate under contract,” said Batara. “Anything can happen after this. I’ll be 23 years old in September, so I’ll take this fight and see how it goes, and see what happens next.”