Since this summer we knew we had to defend the World Title (WBF), this would happen on the 10th of November at Henin Beaumont. Training camp started early on since I had another fight scheduled at Ghent the 5th of October. There was not much time left in between those two fights, so we had to divide this period in 10 days of active recovery, 10 days of getting the intense work done, 10 days of getting all the work out in perfect condition. Everything was about the number 10, it would be a fight over 10 rounds and my 10th Pro fight, which I wanted to be another win. #10-0
It was a heavy camp since during the hardest ten days I got really sick, luckily my body was reborn the first day of fight week.
As the fight came closer the name Dahiana “la cobra” Santana came ringing to my ears. A well experienced fighter, who wants to come and take my title. A woman who knows what boxing is about since she had 45 fights, won 15 with KO. She had claimed two world titles herself.
Let’s get that defense work to a 100% but don’t be to static, be dynamic because this dynamic and constant being in movement is what keeps me solid and relaxed.
Fight day is up 10th of November. My support team was already chanting their songs, making clear that they were around the ring to lift me up! (I am so freakin’ lucky with all of them, loads of love for you guys and girls!)
After the presentation the first bell rang. The start sign. Be who you are trained to be, the best boxer you have inside yourself and get that out. Full focus was immediately on… Get those hands up, let’s see what she has in her. Get some footwork done, feel the temperature and build from that point on. The cobra was there, a snake trying to pull her prey towards her and she tried to counter every time with heavy swings.
No way I was getting hypnotized by her movement, by her snake plan. I want to control the snake, dominate and make the execution mine. This fight was going to be mine.
Patiently I waited & worked on her until I felt her fatigue was getting there. I rised to the occasion to step in and step out, jab, get in the distance, get out of the way. Turning, pivoting, countering, head movement. Everything we trained for during training camp had to be done there in those rounds!
8th round, my strongest. I felt good, filled with confidence. My heavy shots that got the snake hypnotized herself. The round where it was clear that I was the Snake Charmer.
Back in my corner: what should we do, take the risk and finish the fight before the final bell. Did I want to do that, of course I wanted to. Am I able to take that risk? I am. But I didn’t.
Final bell rang & it was clear to me that the fight was mine. Scoring of 100-80 99-81 99-81. I charmed that snake and I get to keep my title. Step by step we are moving on, getting better fights. We are aiming high, we don’t make a lot of noise. But we are making our way.
Thank you for everyone being there to support me:
Friends & Family
Acquaintances & boxing lovers
But most of all my team:
Mohamed & Mehdi Nichane
Team Henin Beaumont
And my wife, Charlotte, to be there and support me 100% at every second of every day.
Up to the next chapter of my story