Valentina Shevchenko claimed her biggest win to date tonight at UFC On FOX 20 as she got the better of former champion Holly Holm on the scorecards in the main event of UFC On FOX 20.
The main event of the evening is underway! Shevchenko feels out with the leg kick, but doesn’t connect. Feints from Holm. Leg kick for Shevchenko.
Stomp to the knee from Holm. Shevchenko just short on a couple of punches. A leg kick apiece. Holm comes up short with a head kick.
Shevchenko with a right hand. She lands the jab again as Holm steps in.
Suddenly it’s Holm who lands with a right hand and it staggers Shevchenko, but she gets her legs back underneath her and seems ok.
Holm looks to flurry, but Shevchenko with a right hand to stunt her progress. Side kick to the head from Holm, but doesn’t find the mark.
Shevchenko bails out of a spinning attack, but does lands a jab. Body kick apiece. Left hand for Shevchenko and closes the distance for a nice takedown. Holm does very well to stand right back up though and presses Shevchenko up against the cage. She lands a couple of knees from this position.
More knees to the thigh from Holm, and a few short ones in return from Shevchenko. They break apart and that’s the end of the round.
Feints for Holm. Shevchenko misses the jab. Leg kick for ‘Bullet’. Axe kick attempt from Shevchenko. Side kick to the body from Holm.
Body kick from Holm, leg kick for Shevchenko. Holm in with a flurry of punches, but Shevchenko clinches and looks to press her against the cage. Holm easily reverses the position though and pushes her to the cage.
Not much happening in the clinch and as they break Holm stumbles. Shevchenko lands the right hook. Holm misses a strike and spinning attack from Shevchenko is blocked.
Leg kick for Shevchenko. Oblique kick from Holm. Straight punches for Holm. Solid left for Shevchenko finds the mark.
Shevchenko presses forward with punches and a kick behind it. Shevchenko with a jab. She lands another punch. She’s countering nicely at times here.
Shevchenko staggers backwards, but it was just a slip. Kick from Holm, then a spinning backfirst in return from Shevchenko.
Another exchange with Shevchenko looking for the right hook as the round ends.
Leg kick for Shevchenko. Oblique kick attempt from Holm misses and she eats a leg kick in return. Another quick leg kick for Shevchenko. Now she lands that right hook.
A fair bit of Holm’s offense is coming up short, while Shevchenko is finding the target more often. Superman punch attempt from Holm and almost gets another spinning backfist in return.
Superman punch attempt from Shevchenko now, but misses. Good kick for Holm and one in return from Shevchenko.
Shevchenko catches a kick and works a takedown from it. Holm does well to stand and presses Shevchenko against the cage. Holm has a little blood leaking from close to her right eye that may have come from a headbutt.
Shevchenko able to burst forward and lands the takedown again. This time she’s able to maintain the position from half guard. Shevchenko just holding position as we approach a minute to go in the round.
The referee isn’t standing them back up despite boos from the crowd. Finally Shevchenko shows a little offense with short elbows and that allows her to maintain this position until the end of the round.
Onto the fourth round then with the former champ Holm having a lot of work to do at this stage in the fight.
Holm with a nice jab. Side kick attempt. Shevchenko with a leg kick. Chopping kick to the thigh from Holm.
Nice one-two and a kick from Shevchenko. Holm attempts a kick and Shevchenko counters with a spinning kick that doesn’t connect.
Another leg kick for Shevchenko. Hook lands for her. Quick leg kick. Holm steps in and eats a punch.
Holm still having trouble landing. She comes up short again and eats a leg kick counter. One-two and a kick from Holm all out of range.
Shevchenko attempts a single leg takedown, but Holm moves out of danger.
Shevchenko’s turn to miss with a combo and is unsuccessful at clinching shortly afterwards. Superman punch misses for Shevchenko, but the leg kick afterwards does land.
Leg kick for Holm connects. Push kick for Shevchenko and then a short flurry of punches. Left hook for Holm. Inside leg kick for Shevchenko and we’re headed to the fifth round.
Shevchenko likely on course to victory here unless Holm can do something big in the final round. She needs to start finding the target with regularity.
Feints for Holm. She commits and eats a jab. Shevchenko just countering her very well. She snaps out her jab again.
Holm goes upstairs with a kick that just misses the target. Another nice counter punch from Shevchenko. Left hand lands solidly with a one-two for Shevchenko.
Leg kick for Shevchenko. Good right hook counter for her. Spinning back kick for Shevchenko.
Holm in close lands punches and a kick, but Shevchenko returning fire.
Shevchenko with the inside leg kick. A couple of kick attempts from Holm and a spinning wheel kick from Shevchenko.
Superman punch followed by the leg kick from Shevchenko. That’s a nice combo and she’s delivered it a couple of times in this fight.
Shevchenko mises with the left hand and Shevchenko lands her counter. Holm with a leg kick. Right hook and a leg kick from Holm – that was better from her.
Side kick from Holm knocks Shevchenko off-balance for her spinning kick attempt.
Into the final minute and Shevchenko lands a nice counter. Overhand misses for Holm and she narrowly misses the spinning backfist coming her way.
Leg kick and hard hooks for Shevchenko. Leg kick for Holm. That’s the end of the fight, we’re headed to the judges scorecards.
There’s no doubt that Holm is a cardio machine, but her offensive output just wasn’t effective tonight, whereas Shevchenko showed off her striking skills with greater accuracy, nice combos and sharp counters, together with the occasional takedown.
With that in mind, Shevchenko is a deserving unanimous decision winner here, 49-46 on all three judges scorecards.
So, yet again the ever-changing top end of the bantamweight division is shifting, with Holm going from champion to a two-fight losing streak in an eight month period, and it’ll be interesting to see what this does for the title picture at 135lbs.