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Bethe Correia ‘surprised’ by Sarah Kaufman’s callout, vows to knock her out in the first round

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Bethe Correia was called out by Sarah Kaufman on Twitter, and she has a response.

Undefeated in MMA after 10 professional fights, three under the UFC banner, Correia is sidelined after undergoing an eye surgery, and would be glad to face Kaufman inside the Octagon in late March.

"I was surprised with another girl calling me out," Correia told MMAFighting.com. "She tweeted at me inviting me to go to war, asking when I can come back. I will be cleared to fight in the end of March."

Kaufman scored 10 of her 17 wins by way of KO or TKO, and that’s exactly the type of fight Correia wants for her return.

"Sarah is a striker like me and I love to fight strikers," Correia said. "I wanted my next fight to be against a top 5 so people would stop saying I can’t beat Ronda because I haven’t faced a top 5 yet. The majority of her wins were by TKO, and I’m ready to fight her. I want to fight someone who will stand and bang with me, not someone who will just try to hug me.

"She already fought Ronda Rousey, Alexis Davis, Leslie Smith, Liz Carmouche, Miesha Tate. She’s fought all the top fighters, so that’s even better for me. That’s up to the UFC. I just hope my next fight is against either Ronda or a top 5."

Following a streak of four decision victories, Correia finished a fight in the UFC for the first time when she knocked out Rousey’s teammate Shayna Baszler at UFC 177, and predicts a sequence of finishes in 2015.

"I never shy away from a brawl," she said. "I will beat her or anyone else by first-round knockout."

Rousey is set to defend her 135-pound title against Cat Zingano at UFC 184 on Feb. 28, and Correia would also be down to face "Rowdy" next if that’s what the UFC wants – and assuming she beats Zingano.

"If I could choose, I would love to go straight to the title fight, but it’s not my call," Correia said. "The UFC has a project for me, and we’ll follow it step by step. I will fight Ronda in 2015. I want Ronda to win (at UFC 184) so I am the one to defeat her."