Natalie Gonzales Hills is ready to shake things up at the ONE Championship battlefield.
And come the “ONE: Pride of Lions” event on November 13 in Singapore, the 27-year-old Muay Thai specialist is going to show just what she is made of against Angela “Unstoppable” Lee.
“I’m really excited to be fighting internationally and to debut on ONE Championship is huge,” Hills said in an interview. “I want to put on a great performance and get back on the winning track. There is a lot going through my mind but I’m really trying to stay focused, keep my composure and fight my fight.”
Called the “Kilapino” inside the MMA cage, Hills was born in Cavite City, Philippines. And although the Filipino-British fighter now calls New South Wales her home, she hopes that fight fans in the Philippines will embrace her as their very own.
Filipinos, may it be in any sport, are very passionate – and even more so in the international stage when flag and country are in the center of the action.
“As a child we went from England to the Philippines for family holidays. In 2011, I went to live in the Philippines for three months with my relatives and tried to learn Tagalog,” shared Hills.
“I’m really excited to be fighting for ONE Championship and to have a chance at connecting with Filipino fight fans. I was born in Cavite City less than an hour away from Manila so it has always been a dream of mine to fight there.”
“I would be honored to gain a following in the Philippines because although I was raised in England, I have always been very proud of my Filipino heritage.”
The 27-year-old straw weight competitor may be a looker, but don’t let her “soft” outside appearance fool you.
The “Kilapino” – a play of the words “killer” and “Filipino” – stresses she’s a totally different person inside the cage.
“My fighting style is very aggressive,” quipped Hills.
And as for her coming battle with the undefeated Lee, Hills said her hunger and work ethic will be some of her weapons come fight night.
“I know she is talented and hungry, but I have those qualities, too. I am not worried and look forward to the challenge,” Hills said confidently.