With the growing popularity of women’s MMA, it is important to recognize these women with a rankings system similar to the men. Between the UFC’s inclusion of a bantamweight division, its addition of a strawweight division, its recent announcement of a flyweight division and the all-female promotion of Invicta FC, more and more women are being exposed to casual and hardcore fans alike. Every month, Combat Press compiles the staff’s individual rankings from featherweight to atomweight to create the Combat Press Women’s MMA Rankings.

Featherweight Division (145 pounds)
  1. Cris “Cyborg” Justino (1)
  2. Julia Budd (2)
  3. Germaine de Randamie (3)
  4. Megan Anderson (4)
  5. Charmaine Tweet (5)
  6. Latoya Walker (6)
  7. Talita Nogueira (7)
  8. Arlene Blencowe (10)
  9. Felicia Spencer (8)
  10. Ediane Gomes (9)

The featherweight division was dormant in September, and it appears it will be the same way in October.

Bantamweight Division (135 pounds)
  1. Amanda Nunes (1)
  2. Valentina Shevchenko (2)
  3. Holly Holm (3)
  4. Ronda Rousey (4)
  5. Raquel Pennington (5)
  6. Julianna Pena (6)
  7. Cat Zingano (8)
  8. Liz Carmouche (9)
  9. Tonya Evinger (10)
  10. Sarah Kaufman (NR)

Dropped out of rankings: Sara McMann (7)


A couple of major fights took place in September. Amanda Nunes solidified herself as the best bantamweight in the world. She was able to keep her UFC bantamweight championship while besting Valentina Shevchenko in a fun, close bout. On the same UFC 215 card, Sara McMann was taken out of the top 10 when she was finished by Ketlen Vieira.

Flyweight Division (125 pounds)
  1. Jennifer Maia (1)
  2. Agnieszka Niedzwiedz (2)
  3. Vanessa Porto (3)
  4. Roxanne Modafferi (4)
  5. Rin Nakai (5)
  6. Ilima Macfarlane (6)
  7. Andrea Lee (9)
  8. DeAnna Bennett (7)
  9. Sarah D’Alelio (8)
  10. Kalindra Faria (10)/Sabina Mazo (NR)

The month of September was a busy one for the flyweights. In the Legacy Fighting Alliance, Andrea Lee retained her flyweight title by submitting Jamie Thorton. Lee’s win earned her a UFC contract, but she cannot compete for six months due to past indiscretions in drug testing. On the same LFA 23 card, Sabina Mazo stormed into the rankings with another highlight-reel finish, this time against Linsey Williams. Though it doesn’t count on their official records, Roxanne Modafferi and DeAnna Bennett scored wins on The Ultimate Fighter 26 over Shana Dobson and Karine Gevorgyan, respectively. In October, Vanessa Porto faces off with Marta Souza in Brazil.

Strawweight Division (115 pounds)
  1. Joanna Jedrzejczyk (1)
  2. Jessica Andrade (4)
  3. Claudia Gadelha (2)
  4. Karolina Kowalkiewicz (3)
  5. Rose Namajunas (5)
  6. Michelle Waterson (6)
  7. Tecia Torres (7)
  8. Carla Esparza (8)
  9. Cynthia Calvillo (9)
  10. Angela Hill (10)

A new No. 2 strawweight emerged in September. In what turned out to be a barnburner, Jessica Andrade scored an impressive decision over countrywoman Claudia Gadelha. Gadelha, the longtime No. 2 fighter in the division, relinquished the spot for the first time in a while. In October, Karolina Kowalkiewicz will fight in front of a home crowd when she takes on Jodie Esquibel.

Atomweight Division (105 pounds)
  1. Ayaka Hamasaki (1)
  2. Jinh Yu Frey (2)
  3. Herica Tiburcio (3)
  4. Seo Hee Ham (4)
  5. Janaisa Morandin (5)
  6. Julia Jones (6)
  7. Tessa Simpson (7)
  8. Mina Kurobe (8)
  9. Naho Sugiyama (9)
  10. Ashley Cummins (10)

There was no activity for the top-10 atomweights in the month of September. As of now, none of the top 10 are scheduled to compete in October either.

Editor’s Note: Fighters are eligible to be ranked if they have competed in the last 18 months. Any fighter that chooses to switch weight classes will be ranked in their previous weight class until they have competed twice in their new division.