With her first win in the UFC, Brazil’s Talita Bernardo has bought herself some breathing room following UFC Moncton — and no matter where she fights next, she’ll be focused.
Moncton, NB — Talita Bernardo was tasked Saturday with taking on Canada’s own Sarah Moras at UFC Moncton. With the crowd firmly on Moras’ side, it was the classic ‘enemy territory’ fight for Bernardo, but one she performed admirably in. Coming out with a unanimous decision win, the victory snapped a two-fight losing streak, and represented her first win in the UFC octagon.
It also likely saved her spot in the UFC women’s bantamweight division. While not the deepest at the moment, going 0-3 in the weight class would likely have resulted in her exit. Speaking backstage following the fight, Bernardo explained her approach to the belt, and how she approaches fighting away from home.
“I knew she wanted to keep the fight standing, because I’m a black belt,” Talita Bernardo told reporters including Cageside Press (via translator). “I think she knew that I was a little better than her on the ground. So I prepared myself a lot on the stand-up game. I was ready for the stand-up that she brought, and her not trying to take me down.” It played out exactly as she envisioned. “It was everything that I expected it to be,” she said.
Bernardo kept cool under fire during the fight, and explained that “I didn’t want to use a lot of my energy trying to get the takedown, so I was calm, I was relaxed in my stand-up.” She knew that “in the right time,” that when she “entered to shoot the takedown, that it would work.” She also expected a highly motivated Sarah Moras in the third, being up two rounds against the Canadian. “I knew that she was going to come with everything that she had in the third round, especially at the end. I knew that I had to move, I knew that I had to be aware of my surroundings on that ending, so the referee didn’t think that I was knocked out.”
Bernardo recognized Moras’ skill on the ground as well, but said that that “I knew that my ground game was enough to defend her submission attempts, and that I was ready for the fight.”
Now, it’s on to the next one, though first, “right now all I want is to go home, and take some vacation with my daughter.”
As for where that next fight might be, it doesn’t seem to matter to Talita Bernardo. The Brazilian has fought in Poland, and Canada, and told Cageside Press that “I try to I keep my mind only inside the cage, I try to not be distracted by the things around me when I’m entering the cage or with the crowd or anything like that.” As a result, she hasn’t felt any “kind of pressure fighting anywhere else in the world. I just focus on inside the cage.”