It has been almost a year since former strawweight title challenger Karolina Kowalkiewicz last fought in the UFC Octagon. Following her last bout against Yan Xiaonan, Kowalkiewicz had to undergo eye surgery that could have ended her fighting career. Now after a lengthy recovery, she is planning her return to the cage. Kowalkiewicz spoke to the Polish media outlet MMA Rocks! about when she would be hoping for this comeback.
“March or April. Nothing is signed yet, but I’m getting ready for that date,” She said via Google Translate.
The injury to her eye as a result of her unanimous decision loss to Xiaonan back in February was very intensive. Kowalkiewicz was very open with her fans about what she went through in recovery from the injury. She needed surgery and had a titanium plate inserted into her eye socket to control the damage.
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When Kowalkiewicz came into the UFC back in 2015, she was like a breath of fresh air in the strawweight division. She was always smiling but once the cage door closed she was a fierce competitor. Her hometown rivalry with former champ Joanna Jędrzejczyk sparked the interest of fans. She won three in a row to secure that date with Jędrzejczyk on November 12, 2016, when she would challenge her for the UFC title, and the title of the best fighter in Poland. Unfortunately, Kowalkiewicz lost that bout and since that loss, has gone 2-5 in the UFC.
Due to her absence, Kowalkiewicz has been removed from the UFC rankings. She is still a draw and will most likely receive a ranked opponent upon her return. With a win, she could find herself back in the top ten and just a few fights away from another shot at UFC gold. Perhaps another fight with Jędrzejczyk could be in the cards.