MMA star Angela Lee: Accident was a wake-up call
MMA champion Angela has a new outlook in life and looks forward to the rematch against Yamaguchi
Just five months after her horrific car accident, mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Angela Lee is back on her feet with a fresh perspective on life and a new-found love for the sport.
In a conference call yesterday morning, Lee said: "I truly believe that everything happens for a reason. It was a huge wake-up call for me, for my family not to take anything for granted.
"Now I really feel that everything is coming into place and it's given me this renewed outlook on everything - not just on martial arts, but on life aswell.
"It's really reignited my passion for martial arts. There's been many ups and downs in the past year.
"But, with the support of my family, I've managed to overcome all of these adversities and I'm looking forward to a great night on May 18th."
The upcoming rematch against Mei Yamaguchi at the Singapore Indoor Stadium was supposed to take place late last November but was postponed after the 21-year-old's accident.
The atomweight champion was on her way to the gym at 4.30am when she fell asleep at the wheel, causing her car to collide into a guardrail and flip six times. She escaped with a slight concussion and minor burns but suffered from nightmares after the incident.
But she has recovered and considers herself extremely lucky to have gotten away without any serious injuries.
I feel 100 per cent back to normal.Angela Lee
Lee, who resumed training in mid-January, said: "I've taken the time that I need to fully recover, physically, mentally, emotionally, and now I'm just ready to get back to doing what I love to do most, which is competing.
"I overcame this adversity, just like all adversities in life and I'm just ready to get back in action.
"Mentally, that was the biggest step to overcome so I feel great right now and there are no issues. I feel 100 per cent back to normal."
Lee has defended her ONE Championship atomweight title twice since her historical crowning as the first and youngest winner of the category after she defeated Yamaguchi in May 2016.
It will be Lee's first match in a year when she steps back into the cage in two months.
But she remains undaunted by the year-long break, even stating that it has played a huge part in her development.
She said: "This has given me so much time to prepare, to really upgrade my skills in many areas.
"We can see in the past two title defences since I've won the belt that I've made leaps and bounds in how I execute my techniques and how I finish my fights."
But Yamaguchi, 35, is determined to avenge her loss and is adamant that her progress since their previous encounter will put Lee's undefeated record to rest.
She said: "It's been two years since the first fight but both of us have had a lot of time to learn and improve.
"It's going to be a tough challenge for me, facing the champion.
"I know that a lot of people want to see who can stop the 'Unstoppable' Lee, so I believe I'm going to be the one."