Ilima-Lei Macfarlane, the former and inaugural Bellator Women’s Flyweight World Champion wants to contest for the belt once again on her retirement fight and is eyeing her friend, mentor and reigning champion Liz Carmouche for a title shot.
My ideal fight with Liz is my last fight, my retirement fight for the belt: Ilima-Lei Macfarlane
Macfarlane is currently on a two fight losing streak. Returning to the cage after nearly a year and a half in her last outing, she faced Justine Kish at Bellator 279 in April, which marked her second defeat in a row, after a remarkable 11-fight undefeated streak.
The 32-year-old, who became the inaugural Women’s Flyweight champion at Bellator 186 in November 2017, defended her belt four times during her title reign until December 2020 when she suffered her maiden career loss to Juliana Velasquez at Bellator 254.
Now, the fan favorite Hawaiian is set for a return against Bruna Ellen at Bellator 284, taking place this 12th of August at Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Speaking to BJPenn.com in an exclusive interview, Macfarlane said that she hopes to hand Ellen her first stoppage defeat.
“I do like being the fighter to deliver the first for a lot of fighters,” said Macfarlane, “For example, Emily Ducote, I’m the only person to finish her, she’s the former Invicta champ and now in the UFC. I like having that notch, so why not go for that exclamation point and be the first person to finish her.”
A win over Ellen will not only put her back to winning ways, but Macfarlane is also eyeing to exhaust her current contract and in hopes of making a spectacular end to her MMA career, will be looking forward to taking on her friend and mentor Liz Carmouche, who defeated Velasquez to win the title at Bellator 278 in April.
“It was awesome to see the belt get wrapped around her waist as she was one of the people that mentored me and put in so much hard work. But, I’m just really looking forward to the day we finally stand across from each other in the cage and get paid to beat each other up… We have agreed to fight each other and it will happen. My ideal fight with Liz is my last fight, my retirement fight for the belt. I have four fights left on this contract and that will be it for me,” Macfarlane added.