Valentina Shevchenko is now in the UFC Women’s Flyweight Champion.
Shevchenko took on former UFC Women’s Strawweight Champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk.
Shevchenko took the center of the octagon, and the two threw some light leg kicks at each other. Joanna threw some light jabs, and Valentina returned with a hard jab.
The two clinched and Shevchenko took Joanna down and held her in side control, squeezing her and refusing to let her opponent move. Joanna refused to let Valentina move to mount, though.
Joanna worked her way up, and the two clinched up against the cage. She clearly wanted to get away, but Valentina kept her pressed up against the cage.
The former Strawweight Champion threw some knees, but couldn’t get the Russian off of her. Finally, the two broke, and Joanna hit Valentina with a big left.
The two traded some light strikes back and forth in the last minute, but then Valentina hit her opponent with a huge spinning back kick. Joanna stayed up, though, and the round came to an end.
Round 2 started out the same way as Round 1, with both fighters trading some light jabs. Shevchenko hit her opponent with a kick to the stomach, but Joanna returned with a kick to the leg.
The Pole threw a body kick, but Valentina landed a one-two as the halfway point in the match approached. Shevchenko then landed a front kick to the face, but the former Strawweight queen stayed in it.
Back to the ground they went, and Shevchenko landed on top. Joanna worked her way back up, but the Russian threw her to the mat with a massive takedown. Again, she ended up in side control, controlling Joanna and landing some short but hard elbows and punches. Joanna kicked her legs, and worked her way back up, but not before eating a hard knee. Round 2 was clearly in Valentina’s favor.
Valentina was clearly in no mood to give up her lead in the third round, landing another spinning back kick to the body and showing the crowd that she was willing to stand and bang with Joanna. At three and a half minutes in, she showboated with a spinning back kick to the head the narrowly missed its target.
Joanna was still in it, though, landing a nice right. Shevchenko came in with a one-two, though. The Pole landed a kick to the body, but Valentina almost caught it.
With a minute and a half left, Valentina went for another takedown, but she couldn’t land it. Still, with the final minute winding down and with Joanna bleeding from her nose, it looked like Shevchenko was winning the round.
Joanna took the center of the cage immediately at the beginning of the championship rounds, clearly realizing that she was probably behind. She pushed the pace of the round, peppering the Russian with punches and kicks.
With a little over three minutes to go, though, Shevchenko took her opponent down yet again. Joanna gave up her back, but still managed to work her way up. Shevchenko pushed the action up against the cage, and held Joanna in a headlock. She let go and pushed the former champion up against the cage.
Joanna turned the tables and the two broke away, but there were only 40 seconds left in the round. The two exchanged some punches and kicks before the round ended.
Fifth and final round. If Joanna was going to make something happen, this was the time. Though she kept the pressure on, she didn’t seem to do much to turn the tide.
Shevchenko initiated another clinch, pressing Joanna up against the cage.
With three minutes left, the referee separated the two and Joanna landed a punch. Valentina came in with a one-two-kick combo. Shevchenko wanted to clinch, but Joanna pushed her away.
With a minute and a half left, the Pole had to land something big. Sadly for her, Shevchenko pushed her up against the fence in the final minute and held her there. The two broke away, but Valentina hit another spinning back kick before the round ended.
With a clearly dominant performance, Valentina Shevchenko became the UFC Women’s Flyweight Champion via unanimous decision.
NOTE: The first version of this article incorrectly claimed Valentina Shevchenko was the first ever UFC Women’s Flyweight Champion. She wasn’t. Nicco Montano was.