UFC Announces Second Strawweight Match, Signs Joanna Jedrzejczyk
Polish Flyweight Joanna Jedrzejczyk, last seen knocking out UFC veteran and Oxford Rhodes Scholar Rosi Sexton at Cage Warriors 69, has officially signed with the UFC. She faces Juliana Lima on July 26th at San Jose’s UFC on Fox 12 card, according to a report from mmarocks.pl. Jedrzejczyk, who is 26 and currently ranked #4 at Flyweight in the WMMA Unified Rankings, was signed to Invicta FC but has apparently been released from her contract.
Jedrzejczyk confirmed the signing on her Facebook page. Her bout with Lima is just the second confirmed fight in the UFC’s fledgling Women’s Strawweight division, following the previous announcement of Claudia Gadelha vs. Tina Lähdemäki, slated for Ultimate Fight Night 45 on July 16 in Atlantic City, NJ.
Jedrzejczyk, a former Muay Thai fighter with a 27-2-1 pro record, has been undefeated since moving to MMA in 2012. Known for her huge power, she held notable wins over Julia Berezikova and Karla Benitez before facing Rosi Sexton at Flyweight on June 7th. Sexton was extremely aggressive, throwing spinning backfists, roundhouse kicks, and flying knees to set up punches, but most of her flashier attacks failed to land. Jedrzejczyk dropped her multiple times with punches to the head and body before knocking her out at 2:36 in the second round. Sexton, who at one point held the world #1 Women’s Flyweight ranking, was the first British female in the UFC, and is a practicing osteopath with multiple degrees, announced her retirement a couple weeks later. You can view the fight below, it’s definitely worth checking out:
Jedrzejczyk’s opponent, Juliana “Ju Thai” Lima (6-1), was one of eleven fighters signed by the UFC from Invicta last December, and is one of the more highly regarded prospects in the division. Initially slated to be on The Ultimate Fighter Season 20 in the UFC’s tournament for their inaugural Strawweight championship, Lima was removed from the show’s line-up due to her inability to speak English, a must for an English-language reality show.
Lima, who hails from Belo Horizonte, Brazil, holds a notable win over Kinberly Tanaka Novaes and has bases in both Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Her only loss has been to current world #5 Strawweight Katja Kankaanpää at Invicta FC 5.
With both fighters boasting very high-level striking, this looks to have the makings of an exciting stylistic match-up. While this bout won’t be deciding an immediate title contender, the winner will get a decisive head start on most of the TUF competitors, and could very likely become a top 10 contender in the division from the first rankings.
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