Liz Carmouche (C) (Lucas Noonan/Bellator MMA)

Combat Press Women’s MMA Rankings: May 2022

With the growing popularity of women’s MMA, it is important to recognize these women with a rankings system of their own. Between the UFC’s inclusion of weight classes from strawweight up to featherweight, Bellator’s increasing attention to the women’s side of the sport, and the all-female promotion 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.

Note: the numbers in parentheses represent the fighter’s ranking from the previous month.


Featherweight (61.9-66.3 kilograms)
  1. Amanda Nunes (1)
  2. Cris “Cyborg” Justino (2)
  3. Kayla Harrison (3)
  4. Julia Budd (4)
  5. Norma Dumont (5)
  6. Cat Zingano (6)
  7. Felicia Spencer (7)
  8. Arlene Blencowe (8)
  9. Pam Sorenson (9)
  10. Sarah Kaufman (10)

The month of April saw the second-ranked Cris “Cyborg” Justino defend her Bellator championship over the game Arlene Blencowe in a rematch to keep that second ranking. Looking into May, Norma Dumont will look to continue her ascent in the rankings when she takes on Macy Chiasson.

Bantamweight (57.3-61.8 kilograms)
  1. Julianna Pena (1)
  2. Amanda Nunes (2)
  3. Germaine de Randamie (3)
  4. Holly Holm (4)
  5. Raquel Pennington (5)
  6. Aspen Ladd (6)
  7. Irene Aldana (7)
  8. Ketlen Vieira (8)
  9. Yana Kunitskaya (9)
  10. Miesha Tate (10)

Raquel Pennington and Aspen Ladd were the lone top-10 fighters to compete in April, albeit against one another. Pennington came out victorious to hold her fifth ranking. Looking into May, Holly Holm looks to get back into title contention when she takes on fellow contender Ketlen Vieira.

Flyweight (52.8-57.2 kilograms)
  1. Valentina Shevchenko (1)
  2. Liz Carmouche (2)
  3. Katlyn Chookagian (4)
  4. Juliana Velasquez (5)
  5. Manon Fiorot (6)
  6. Alexa Grasso (7)
  7. Jennifer Maia (8)
  8. Lauren Murphy (10)
  9. Andrea Lee (NR)
  10. Taila Santos (NR)

Dropped out of the rankings: Jessica Andrade (3), Ilima Macfarlane (9)

The month of April was busy for the flyweights. Jessica Andrade drops out of the rankings after her return to the strawweight division, beating Amanda Lemos. Ilima-Lei Macfarlane also dropped out of the rankings after taking a loss to Justine Kish. Liz Carmouche scored Bellator gold in besting Juliana Velasquez. Looking into May, Katlyn Chookagian will take on Amanda Ribas, while Andrea Lee will meet up with Viviane Araujo.

Strawweight (50.1-52.7 kilograms)
  1. Rose Namajunas (1)
  2. Weili Zhang (2)
  3. Joanna Jędrzejczyk (3)
  4. Jessica Andrade (NR)
  5. Carla Esparza (4)
  6. Marina Rodriguez (5)
  7. Xiaonan Yan (6)
  8. Michelle Waterson (7)
  9. Mackenzie Dern (10)
  10. Tecia Torres (8)

Dropped out of the rankings: Amanda Ribas (9)

Mackenzie Dern made a move in the month of April, as the jiu-jitsu ace defeated Tecia Torres. Jessica Andrade re-entered the strawweight rankings after moving back down from flyweight and besting Amanda Lemos, who drops out of the rankings. In May, top strawweight Rose Namajunas defends her UFC title against Carla Esparza in a highly anticipated rematch.

Atomweight (Under 50.1 kilograms)
  1. Jessica Delboni (1)
  2. Seika Izawa (6)
  3. Alesha Zappitella (2)
  4. Ayaka Hamasaki (3)
  5. Ashley Cummins (4)
  6. Lindsey vanZandt (5)
  7. Kanna Asakura (7
  8. Rena Kubota (8)
  9. Saori Oshima (9)
  10. Si Woo Park (10)

Seika Izawa made a monster jump in April, as the Japanese fighter bested country woman Ayaka Hamasaki. Also, Kanna Asakura defeated Satomi Takano. Looking into May, Alesha Zappitella moves up to 115 pounds to challenge Invicta strawweight champion Emily Ducote, and Lindsey vanZandt meets with Jillian DeCoursey.