Leah McCourt says she has the advantage over Jessica Borga
LONDON – Leah McCourt is hoping a less stressful buildup will help her secure another victory for her Bellator 267 record.
McCourt (5-1 MMA, 4-0 BMMA) faces American Jessica Borga in the Bellator 267 Main Co-Event, which takes place on Friday October 1 at SSE Arena, Wembley, London. The main card airs live on Showtime after preliminaries on MMA Junkie.
Speaking to reporters, including MMA Junkie, on the media day before the event, McCourt said the smoother fight prep week would result in his caged performance on the night of the fight itself.
McCourt produced a gritty return performance to claim a triangular second-round strangulation submission from Janay Harding to the Bellator 259 in May after his return from shoulder surgery and a lengthy COVID attack.
“I think anything that could have gone wrong has gone wrong in this last camp,” she said with a laugh. “Even the fight and outing week, I was on a plane the week before and my corner team weren’t coming – I was going there on my own. I didn’t have a team! But at the last minute, they were able to come.
“This camp has certainly been a lot smoother, a lot more time on the mat, a lot more calm and consistent preparation, which I’m happy about and it will show in my performance.”
McCourt faces Borga (3-3 MMA, 1-1 BMMA) on Friday night, and said the Florida native will provide a harsh test. But “The Curse” suggested their similar fighting styles would give him the edge over “The Black Widow”.
“He’s a tough opponent. We had the same number of fights. Whether it’s at Bellator or not, she has experience, ”said McCourt. “Her record doesn’t necessarily reflect her ability in the cage because every fight is a tough fight and she beat good opponents, good finishes, so it will be a tough fight.
“Stylistically, she likes to put the fight against the cage and bring it to the ground. This is what I love to do. But I think she will quickly realize in these clinch positions that I will have a head start. This is my game, this is where I love to be, and I’m excited.
With McCourt on a five-game winning streak, with three of her last four wins coming in, the 29-year-old said she enjoyed life in the Bellator spotlight. But she also said she was buzzing with being the main supporting fight ahead of the main event rematch between Michael “Venom” Page and Douglas Lima.
“I think I had a promotional push because I keep winning. I introduce myself and I win. It depends on my performance, ”she said. “And yes, that sounds like less pressure. But again, this is MVP and Lima’s main co-event and I’m so excited for this fight, let alone fighting on the same map five minutes before! It’s going to be an exciting evening.