Karolina Kowalkiewicz expects Jessica Andrade next but wants Rose Namajunas rematch

Onetime UFC women’s strawweight title challenger

Karolina Kowalkiewicz has her eye on a rematch with champion Rose Namajunas, whom she defeated two years ago prior to an unsuccessful bid for the title, but landing it won’t be that easy.

In an interview with Polsat Sport, Kowalkiewicz (12-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC) estimated she’ll first have to fight Jessica Andrade (18-6 MMA, 9-4 UFC), who, like her, has won her two past octagon bouts.

“At the beginning of July I am flying to UFC (International) Fight Week and then we will set the details,” Kowalkiewicz said. “I dream about fighting with Namajunas, but I must fight a duel to make it happen.”

Kowalkiewicz, who sits at No. 5 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA women’s strawweight rankings, told the UFC she’ll be ready to fight at the end of September, which would give her more than enough time to prepare for No. 3 Andrade, an aggressive striker who’s found her stride at 115 pounds after a run in the bantamweight class.

The two were reportedly set to meet at UFC on FOX 28 in February, but Andrade instead faced Tecia Torres, winning a unanimous decision. Kowalkiewicz said she suffered a bout of pneumonia that prevented her from taking the fight.

“(Andrade) said that I was afraid of her, I avoided her, and this is nonsense,” said the 32-year-old native of Poland.

Kowalkiewicz called out Andrade last October following a “(expletive) awesome” win over Jodie Esquibel on home turf at UFC Fight Night 118. Kowalkiewicz followed up that victory with another over Felice Herrig at UFC 223 in April.

Kowalkiewicz and Andrade hope to realize their championship dreams after separate setbacks against Joanna Jedrzejczyk, whom Namajunas (8-3 MMA, 6-2 UFC) beat in back-to-back outings. Namajunas’ next move is not yet set.

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie

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