On Saturday, Nov. 14 (in North America), the UFC hosted UFC 193: Rousey vs. Holm from Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
In the night’s main event, women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey took on fellow unbeaten Holly Holm. Rousey moved to 12-0 with a 34-second knockout of Bethe Correia in August. The 28-year-old’s last four wins had lasted a combined two minutes and 10 seconds. Holm, a multiple-time world champion boxer, also carried an unblemished resume into the title affair. The 34-year-old had scored back-to-back decision wins over Raquel Pennington and Marion Reneau to earn her crack at Rousey.
The co-main event also featured gold on the line as women’s strawweight titleholder Joanna Jędrzejczyk took on Canada’s Valerie Letourneau. Poland’s Jędrzejczyk demolished former champion Carla Esparza in March to earn the belt and followed that up with a third-round stoppage of another former Invicta FC champion, Jessica Penne, in June to run her record to 10-0. Letourneau, meanwhile, had yet to taste defeat inside the Octagon and enters the title affair riding a four-fight winning streak.
The 13-fight event kicked off Saturday at 6:15 p.m. ET with four fights streaming on UFC Fight Pass. Four additional preliminary card bouts followed at 8 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1, with the five-fight main card airing live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET.
There’s a new champion in the women’s bantamweight division as Holly Holm destroyed Ronda Rousey by second-round knockout. Rousey barreled forward wildly from the opening bell, but Holm used her footwork and range to land with punches. Rousey looked to clinch, but Holm was able to escape. Holm’s strikes continued to find their mark and she even scored with a takedown in the opening stanza. In round two, Holm went for the kill. She rocked Rousey with a left hand and then delivered a perfectly placed head kick that sent an unconscious Rousey to the ground. A few follow-up punches and referee Herb Dean rescued Rousey from further assault.
Strawweight champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk retained her title by battering Canadian Valerie Letourneau for five rounds. Letourneau caught a kick early and worked from top control. Jędrzejczyk worked back to standing and scored with a vicious front kick to the face of Letourneau. That would set the tone for the rest of the fight as the Polish fighter turned up the volume on her striking. Jędrzejczyk peppered the lead leg of Letourneau with kicks, while closing her right eye with jabs. Letourneau’s pace slowed, but she never quit. Jędrzejczyk took a clean sweep on the scorecards with her dominant performance.
Heavyweight Mark Hunt made sure his rematch with Brazilian Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva wouldn’t see the scorecards. Unlike their first meeting, both fighters were patient and tried to find their range. They traded body kicks and hooks on the inside, but once Hunt found his range, it was only a matter of time. A left hook from Hunt wobbled Bigfoot and a follow-up right sent the Brazilian crashing to the mat.
Middleweight Robert Whittaker thrilled the Australian crowd by besting Uriah Hall with an aggressive striking attack. The two TUF veterans largely engaged in a stand-up affair, but it was Whittaker’s frequent combinations and pressure that took Hall out of his comfort zone. Whittaker wobbled Hall in the opening round and took his back, but Hall survived. Hall pushed the action in the final round, but Whittaker continued to land and claimed the fight on all three scorecards.
Heavyweight Jared Rosholt used his wrestling pedigree to edge towering Dutchman Stefan Struve by unanimous decision. Rosholt took Struve to the ground in every round, keeping the lanky striker from generating offense. The crowd booed throughout and Struve’s late surge in round three was too little, too late as Rosholt claimed the win.
Lightweight Jake Matthews survived a tough first round and got back in the win column with a second-round TKO of Akbarh Arreola. Arreola clipped Matthews with a big left hand and followed up with head kick that rocked Matthews. Arreola took the fight to the ground and took Matthews’s back. Matthews survived and turned the tide in the second frame. From the top position, Matthews delivered a barrage of elbows that bloodied the face of Arreola. Between rounds, the doctor’s halted the bout, handing Matthews the win.
Australia’s Kyle Noke thrilled the crowd with a devastating body kick finish of Germany’s Peter Sobotta. The pair traded single shots as they found their range, but a vicious front kick from Noke sent Sobotta reeling to the canvas and screaming in agony. Noke flurried with punches and the referee waved off the bout.
Light heavyweight Gian Villante wasted little time destroying veteran Anthony Perosh with punches. Villante stalked Perosh around the cage, landing heavy shots as Perosh desperately tried to clinch. An uppercut wobbled Perosh, but it was a straight right hand that sent the Aussie crashing to the canvas unconscious.
The televised prelims kicked off with a dominant wrestling display from flyweight Danny Martinez. The American took Australia’s Richie Vaculik to the ground over and over again, preventing Vaculik from mounting any offense. Martinez’s control was simply too much, as he cruised to the lopsided decision win.
Former Olympic judoka Daniel Kelly used his strong clinch game and ground and pound to best Steve Montgomery on the scorecards. Kelly clipped Montgomery early with strikes before scoring with a beautiful throw. Montgomery rebounded in round two with solid combinations. The final round was the deciding factor as Kelly again tossed Montgomery to the mat and finished the fight in the mount.
In a battle of Australians, Richard Walsh earned a unanimous decision win over Steven Kennedy. Walsh peppered the lead leg of Kennedy early, but followed him to the ground was gave up his back. It was more of the same in round two as Walsh outclassed Kennedy standing, but ended up on his back. After three rounds, Walsh took the clear-cut win on the scorecards.
California’s James Moontasri gave newcomer Anton Zafir a rude welcome to the promotion with a violent TKO finish. Zafir closed the distance early and took Moontasri to the ground. Moontasri worked back to his feet and unleashed a spinning back kick, backfist combination that sent Zafir crumpling to the mat late in the opening stanza.
Flyweight Ben Nguyen got the night started with a quick finish of Ryan Benoit. Nguyen clipped Benoit with punches and followed up with knee. He chased Benoit to the mat, moved to mount and then took Benoit’s back. Benoit defended initially, but Nguyen was persistent and secured a fight-finishing rear-naked choke.