Amongst the MMA community, especially those who are fans of UFC and their women’s division, it is said that Ronda Rousey is the best female fighter in the world. The current UFC women’s bantamweight champion holds a 11-0-0 undefeated MMA record along with the record for the fastest win in a championship fight in UFC by making Cat Zingano tap out to an armbar in fourteen seconds. With a fighting repertoire like that, it is no wonder why fans are looking forward to Rousey’s fight against Bethe Correia and then eventually Cris Cyborg.
However, there was one female UFC competitor who continuously climbed the ladder and brought attention to the potential that she may be favored to defeat Ronda Rousey. She is “The Venezuelan Vixen,” Julianna Peña, and after her performance at UFC Fight Night: Mendes vs. Lamas, it is evident that Peña is back and in hot pursuit for Ronda Rousey.
According to Yahoo! Sports, Julianna Peña returned to UFC action at UFC Fight Night: Mendes vs. Lamas in Fairfax, Virginia on April 4, 2015. Peña was set to take on Milana Dudieva. However, fans were insecure about how Peña would perform – not over the fact that she was out for over a year due to injury, but because of the kind of injury she suffered. During a training session, Peña tore her ACL, MCL, LCL, and meniscus in her right knee. Needless to say that recovery from such an injury wouldn’t be just long and painful, but a minor roadblock in a pursuit of a dream. Julianna Peña related to such a sentiment when she stated the following.
“It was a long and grueling road. I took a year off and I feel like if I didn’t take that year off, I’d already be champ by now.”
Fortunately for Julianna Peña, she has not lost a step since stepping back in the Octagon. Vice Fightland detailed Peña’s fight against Milana Dudieva, winning at 3:59 into the first round. How she won is what’s garnering a lot of attention since Peña was able to get into a high mount position on Dudieva after a single-leg takedown. Then the ground and pound game began. As a matter of fact, Julianna Peña won “Performance of the Night” for what she brought to the fight.
Such a victory is vital for Julianna Peña’s pursuit to take on Ronda Rousey. With this win, Peña now has six victories in her record. However with two back-to-back losses, Peña needs to rack up some big wins to even be considered to take on Rousey in a pay-per-view event. Still Julianna Peña has faith she will make it as detailed in her post-fight statement of gratitude.
“Thank you guys for coming out and supporting me. Thank you to all my dedicated fans who have believed in me. I’m a finisher you guys, and I want the belt.”
[Image via UFC Promotions]