Despite Defeat, Jenelyn Olsim Still Proud Of Her Performance In Grand Prix

Published 11/08/2021, 9:57 AM EST


Jenelyn Olsim doesn’t feel any regret over her defeat to Ritu “The Indian Tigress” Phogat in the ONE Women’s Atomweight World Grand Prix Championship semifinals at ONE: NEXTGEN last Friday, 29 October. 

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Her foe outmuscled her on the canvas throughout the bout en route to a unanimous decision win. But despite the clear-cut decision favoring her opposite number, the Team Lakay star believes she exceeded expectations. 

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“I’m proud of my performance today. It was very short notice, my opponent changed, some of my game plans changed – plus I also got a bit excited, because this is the Grand Prix,” the Filipina warrior said. 

“I believe that it’s an opportunity, so I took it [despite the short notice]. I was thinking to myself ‘why not, just accept it, because it’s a bigger opportunity.’ As long as it is an opportunity, I will accept it.” 

Was stepping in on short notice the reason for Jenelyn Olsim losing against Ritu Phogat?

The 24-year-old started last Friday’s contest stronger than her opponent, utilizing her reach and quick hands to disrupt the Indian star. She refused to let Phogat get a dominant position on the ground and threatened with a couple of submissions. 

However, she could only hold back her opponent’s onslaught for so long. 

“The Indian Tigress” established herself in the contest with huge takedowns and strong ground-and-pound, and though Olsim had a share of dominance, Phogat’s wrestling pedigree ultimately shined through. But the Filipina is realistic when reflecting on the result overall and refuses to let it get her down.

“I believe if I was given a longer time to prepare and to train, I could have beaten her. It was quite close,” she said.

“She may have dominated me in wrestling. She may have pinned me down. But I attempted a lot of submissions, and I caught her with my striking.” 

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What’s next for Olsim?

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In true fighter spirit, the Team Lakay star remains positive and is now looking toward the future. The next thing on her mind may be whether she should stay in the atomweight division or move back up to strawweight – where she is the #5-ranked contender. 

In the end, Olsim thoroughly enjoyed being part of the poignant event and appreciates having gotten the opportunity to face one of the most feared atomweight athletes in the world.

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“I feel so great, and I’m very happy to be part of this historic moment,” Olsim said.

“This is a life-changing bout for me. I have reached this far, and I’ve given my best in every training. Though I lost, it just means that I need to train more and gain more experience.”

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Arman Khan

211 articles

Arman Khan is a UFC author for EssentiallySports. He began following combat sports when Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor competed in 'The Money Fight' in 2017. 'The Notorious' attracted Arman to the UFC, and he became an ardent fan of professional fighting as he could draw parallels with the action from his combat sports experience and break down techniques such as striking and striking defense lucidly for the casual fans.

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