One of the best female fighters in the post-Soviet space, Valentina Shevchenko, will speak at UFC 231. To be in the main promotion of the planet, the athlete has hit its rivals in the former Soviet Union and America Latin. Which path was Shevchenko and why it was nicknamed Bullet – in the material "Tapes.ru".
Originally from Frunze (now the city is called Bishkek) since childhood in the hall. Valentina and her sister Antonina were taken to sports by their mother. Elena Shevchenko in Kyrgyzstan is an honored coach and is now president of the local Thai boxing federation. And the mother of future professional combat daughters did not train. Shevchenko, the eldest is confident today – not everyone can work with their children. Therefore, the sisters were led by Pavel Fedotov. The first tutor helps Shevchenko so far. Today he is an honored Kyrgyzstan instructor.
Valentina, like many, has entered the world of martial arts through traditional style. Since Elena Shevchenko holds a black taekwondo belt, Valentina did not have to choose her first discipline. Valentina studied the kicks of the amplitude from the age of five years. And she pulled herself up so that at 12, so as not to embarrass her rivals in the competition, Valentino had to get old on paper.
It happened in one of Muay Thai tournaments in Russia. There, young Shevchenko fought with 17-year-old rivals. And if the smart trainers usually rejuvenate departments on purpose, those close to Valentina have done the opposite. They decided to avoid unnecessary attention. The young athlete was no stranger to fighting the older girls: once in a 15-year Shevchenko tournament in mixed martial arts in Kazakhstan, he faced a 25-year-old rival.
Valentina and her sister Antonina (she is four years older) have declared themselves aloud in a relatively young age. Looking at the department, Fedotov called Shevchenko the Bullet. According to one version, it happened after 12-year-old Valentine had knocked out a 22-year-old rival. Fedotov impressed the speed and impact strength. The nickname is firmly attached to the shaker that agitates the combat work.
Over time, there were no rivals in the post-Soviet space – and Shevchenko appeared in tournaments both in his native Kirghizia, both in Russia and Kazakhstan -. Fedotov saw the Shevchenko sisters' potential. Realizing that they are able to grow up in high-level fighters, they could only find fertile ground. Alas, in Kyrgyzstan, this simply would not be enough resources.
And the Shevchenko sisters, led by Fedotov, set off to conquer Latin America. Valentina moved to Peru. At the same time, he spent some time in relative isolation: the village where they lived was located near the city of Iquitos, near the Amazon itself. No roads You can get water or air.
Based in Peru, the sisters traveled to South America, speaking at Thai boxing tournaments and MMA. Over time, Valentine has taken root in the new country. A native of Kyrgyzstan received a Peruvian passport. And his Spanish allows her to do without an interpreter for local media. At the same time, the fighting trio travels regularly to Thailand. Shevchenko can still be found today in the Tiger Muay Thai hall in Phuket.
But what is Latin America without incidents? Once Valentine with a coach unwittingly took part in a shootout. At the time, Shevchenko had already appeared in the Absolute Fighting Championship (UFC) and was preparing for a clash with the American Holly Holm.
"We went to a restaurant bar near our house in Lima, where a gang of thieves came in. They sent weapons to visitors, threatened them, took the money and beat them, and Pavel immediately replied," he told me and our friend and when the robbers were literally in front of us, I heard shots, "remembers Valentina. During a shootout with the criminals, the trainer was injured. And one of the attackers died following a shot by Fedotov.
By the way, the sisters Fedotov and Shevchenko have instilled the love for filming. Valentina admits she does not have a weapon with herself – she is not ready to answer for the consequences of her use. But win a couple of prizes in competitions in sports shooting – altogether. Also, push to firearrow successfully combined with the nickname of the athlete.
Years of learning Thai boxing have done their job. For opponents of the UFC, Valentine is above all a difficult drummer. He already has five league titles in this discipline. The bullet becomes particularly dangerous in clinch or get on a rival: in such situations, Valentina includes elbows and knees.
The debut in the main fighting organization took place on December 19, 2015. Shevchenko won the first game, which paved the way for more eminent rivals in the division.
In March 2016, she was confronted by the formidable Brazilian Amanda Nunez. Shevchenko gave a real test to the future UFC champion. He fired at an opponent from all the guns and showed a decent speed, dodging the snares of the snarling Núñez. Valentina managed to recover the Brazilian several times in the fight. After three rounds of a double-edged match, Shevchenko was sure she would be awarded the victory, and even raised her hand in advance. It seems that he has never resigned himself to that defeat so far.
"Amanda did not defeat me because she was stronger," said Valentina already in preparation for a rematch with Nunes. The Brazilian has already won the championship belt. And Shevchenko discovered the hill. What, in fact, completed the era of Rhonda Rosie, literally beating the main star of the female MMA in the octagon.
In 2017, Valentina met Núñez again. The stakes have increased: a victory would have made a Bishkek native a champion of the organization. Alas, she could not defeat the Brazilian woman. The fight lasted all five rounds. And Amanda celebrated victory with a separate judicial decision.
In September 2017, the Bullet changed the weight category, moving from the lightest to the lightest division. The compatriot Nunes Priscila Kechoeira, nicknamed Zombie Girl, became a new rival. The Brazilian knew the power of Valentina's elbows. Shevchenko left her blood in the first round. He controlled Quechoireu from the top and ruthlessly practiced a shot after the other, forcing the Brazilian to count the seconds on the saving gong. As a result, the Brazilian Shevchenko, who had lost strength, was forced to surrender to suffocate her from behind.
The second battle in the new Shevchenko division will be held with Joan Engeychik. In MMA, this is the first fighters' meeting, but in Thai boxing, Valentine has already crossed paths with the Polish girl. And all three times Engeychik lost. Enough or not, at UFC 231, Valentina hopes that her previous victories on Yohanna will once again help her break her rival's resistance.