After crushing Weili Zhang by first-round TKO of their first battle again in April to develop into a two-time ladies’s strawweight champion, Rose Namajunas entered UFC 268 understanding the rematch was more likely to be a harder battle. That’s precisely the way it performed out on Saturday night inside New York City’s Madison Square Garden, with Namajunas having to go 5 arduous rounds to win a cut up choice to retain her title.
Zhang got here out sturdy, working off a robust leg kick assault and never falling into the identical entice that led to Namajunas touchdown an enormous headkick that arrange the TKO within the first assembly.
That affected person method paid off early for Zhang. With the leg kicks touchdown and occasional heavy energy punches, Zhang was in a position to arrange a takedown and add a brand new dimension for the champion to fret about early within the battle. Sadly for Zhang, the bottom would even be the place she in the end misplaced the rematch.
After three rounds of shut and aggressive motion that noticed each ladies battle on practically even floor, Namajunas took over the battle within the championship rounds on the energy of her personal takedowns. The place Namajunas had been in a position to escape the bottom earlier within the battle after Zhang takedowns, Zhang was unable to get again to her ft when Namajunas bought high place.
This was very true within the fifth spherical when Namajunas scored the takedown that in the end received her the battle. Early within the spherical, Namajunas stepped ahead, grabbing a physique lock and driving the battle to the spherical. That’s the place the battle would keep for nearly all the 5 minutes of the ultimate spherical, with Namajunas grinding away on the highest to the ultimate horn.
“I had a sense it was going to be a approach harder battle and she or he improved rather a lot,” Namajunas mentioned after the battle. “I give her some props and I do know what I’ve to work on now.”
In the long run, the judges turned in official scorecards of 48-47, 47-48 and 49-46, with two of the three going Namajunas’ approach as she continued her second reign as ladies’s strawweight champion.
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https://www.cbssports.com/mma/information/ufc-268-results-highlights-rose-namajunas-retains-strawweight-title-in-tactical-affair-with-weili-zhang/ | UFC 268 outcomes, highlights: Rose Namajunas retains strawweight title in tactical affair with Weili Zhang