Michaela Scouts Virani
Michaela Sommer cued up yet another Virani MacVicar fight at her home. Virani is to be her opponent in the biggest fight of the 25 year old’s life and the first time she will be on a real, international stage, in the main event even. Michaela had heard of ‘The Canadian Cobra’ before signing up to fight her, but hadn’t really followed her career that closely. She’d seen highlights of some of the big knockouts, and been aware that she had some degree of fame, but hadn’t really appreciated it. Now, given the fact that she’d be sharing a ring with Virani, it was time to scout her in detail.
Michaela started with the early fights. She knew that they wouldn’t reveal as much, because the holes that she spotted in Virani’s early fights would have been closed in the years between her early fights and today, but it would show the kind of fighter that she was at her core. And, perhaps her mentality. Michaela hadn’t been able to dig up any video on Virani’s first two fights, both Virani victories. The first fight she saw was against an ‘undefeated’ redhead with dubious skills. Virani had knocked her down in the first and then laid out the redhead with wicked combination. Michaela smiled a bit. She had similar highlights in her own past.
Then there was the first Kayleigh Parsons fight. Virani had showed good heart in that fight and the ability to hurt her opponent, but she had been too inexperienced to deal with the talented and experienced blonde. The Canadian had gotten a bad knockout at the end of that one too. But Michaela didn’t think there was much to learn from that fight as it was just too far in the past.
A defeat to Lilim Alterion had initially piqued her interest, but the main difference in that fight appeared to have been the fact that Lilim was flat out bigger than Virani. It did show that in a battle of punchers, Virani did suffer when she wasn’t the more powerful boxer. Michaela filed that one away for further use.
The defeat to Masae was instructional…but not all that useful to Michaela. The experienced Japanese boxer had outskilled Virani, took her out of her element before wickedly finishing off ‘The Cobra.’ But that wasn’t a style Michaela could use. However, she did note that taking Virani out of her comfort zone might be something that could be effective.
Virani’s recent run of 6 fights without a loss (basically 6 wins, given that the Parsons rematch had been a robbery) showed Michaela that Virani had learned a lot, closed many of the holes in her game and had become a more complete boxer. Michaela would have preferred to face the one-dimensional puncher that Virani had been, but there was no point worrying about the past. The fight she paid the most attention to was the Carla Flores fight. Though Carla and her had different body types, and different styles, she wondered if Virani might again try to outbox what she perceived to be a one-dimensional puncher. That fight was so much like the Masae fight, with the roles reversed. This time Virani was the orchestrator and Carla was the helpless one.
The last fight Michaela watched was Virani’s title defence against Lexi Mills. The fight, honestly perplexed her. Virani had been off her game, getting outboxed by a fairly pedestrian opponent. But when she had gotten herself out of her funk, she had dispatched Lexi with ease.
Michaela leaned back in her chair and scribbled down a few notes.
- Try to take her out of her element
- She’s strong, but not physical,
- She has good technique which is fundamental to her power
- To stop her, you have to knock her out
- If she hurts you, she’ll knock you out
The young German sighed. Well, hoping for a glaring weakness to reveal itself had been a bit too optimistic. This one was going to be won through hard work. A proper blood, sweat and tears fight.
Michaela Sommer didn’t mind.
Virani Works on her Jab
In MacVicar’s gym in Canada, Virani is working in the ring with Kasandra Sobieski. The youthful Polish fighter has been asked to try to emulate Michaela’s style, even though she is the polar opposite of Michaela in terms of body shape.
Virani’s training for the Michaela fight has been very focused, and she is sharp in the training session, catching Kasandra with accurate jabs repeatedly. Particular focus has been paid to the jab as a weapon to control distance against the shorter fighter, Michaela.
The plan for Virani is not to just flat out try to outbox Michaela like she did against Carla Flores – everyone in the Cobra’s camp feels that Michaela is simply too smart and too good of a boxer for that to work. With Michaela’s good sense of movement, she’s not likely to stand in front of Virani to get hit, but the plan is to punish her as she works to get to her effective range.
Emma steps in the ring with Virani as well to take her assigned lumps, as both of Virani’s usual sparring partners take their turns.
Thomas is happy with the work that Virani has put in during camp. The Cobra has appeared focused and committed to her training.
As training wraps up, Virani, Thomas and Emma gather together for a short conversation.
Thomas: “You looked good out there, Virani…”
Emma: “I can attest to that.”
Thomas: “The peanut gallery will be quiet. How are you feeling? Confident?”
Virani: “This has been a really good camp for sure, but Michaela isn’t a pushover. The more I see of her, the more I think she’s a threat. She’s legit.”
Emma: “We knew that going in though. This isn’t some gimmie fight. But you’ve put in the work.”
Virani: “I know. I worked hard. I wish we could have found someone that has Michaela’s body type.”
Thomas: “Short, stocky fighters with power were hard to come by, so we had to make do.”
Virani: “Thanks for putting in the work you two. I’ll make you proud, win or lose.”
Emma: “But you are going to win, right?”
Virani: “I mean yeah, of course, but I don’t want to sound too arrogant.”
The hard work is done, now was time for the hard part – the fight.