This past Friday, Swedish Muay Thai sensation Smilla Sundell showed why she’s the best in the world as she made her first strawweight title defense against Allycia Rodrigues in Singapore.
In an interview with Frontkick, the young champion breaks down her title winning third-round TKO and gives an exclusive insight into her future plans.
“After the fight I wasn’t really satisfied with my performance, I was unhappy just like usual,” Sundell laughs. “My performance felt sloppy, I just ran into her and got hit with punches and elbows. It didn’t feel right. But when I look at it now it’s actually okay.”
Even though the champion is critical of her own performance, the TKO gave her a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus.
“I had too much energy in the beginning and was like ‘let’s go for it’. But when I hit her with that hook in the last ten seconds of the first round, I kind of changed the fight, which made it easier. If I had a few more seconds before the bell it would have been over in the first,” Sundell says. “Rodrigues was very strong though, all respect to her who went up a weight class. I’m big for my weight class, you know.”
Smilla Sundell can’t find opponents
The Swedish sensation has not been as active as she hoped for since winning the ONE Championship strawweight title back in April 2022. In fact, she reveals she signed at least three fight contracts just to find her opponents pulling out for different reasons.
“It’s frustrating but it’s also a bit flattering that fighters don’t dare to face me,” Sundell says. “Some people think I don’t want to fight so often, but the reason behind my inactivity is that fighters pull out after the contracts are signed.”
“I need to plan things in my life too, you know, to be able to travel to Sweden to see my family and stuff, but that’s impossible when I have fights booked and then cancelled.”
However, the Swedish world champion is fairly confident she will have her next fight in a few months. If everything works out as she plans, Sundell will fight for the promotion’s kickboxing title in the beginning of 2024, against an opponent she knows quite well.
“I hope to get a title shot in kickboxing soon. I’m pretty sure me and Jackie Buntan will fight for the title next year, but I would face anyone for that belt.”
Plans a move to MMA in two years
Back home in Sweden again, Sundell plans to work on her MMA game at Allstars Training Center in Stockholm.
The young champion has all the time in the world to transform into a full-feathered MMA fighter but still aims to debut sooner rather than later in the cage.
“In two years I think, when I’m twenty. So yeah, in two years.”
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