Zhang Weili pushed a relentless pace on the feet and on the mat against Amanda Lemos tonight at UFC 292 to successfully defend her strawweight title via unanimous decision.
Weili reaches out with a side kick to the leg. Low kick from Weili knocks Lemos off her feet as she was going for a high kick.
Weili already starting to work for a pass and despite Lemos trying to fight her off she gets to side control.
The champ is being careful not to give Lemos space to escape here. She lands a little ground-and-pound and then has to secure her position again.
Weili opts to go back to half-guard for security and ten starts to land some solid punches and elbows.
Lemos gets her back to the cage, but she eats hard punches. Lemos bites down on her gumshield and stands up.
Weili bringing her down but gets trapped in a Lemos d’arce choke from her back. Dangerous moments for Weili, but she manages to get free of the guard to take the pressure of the choke and get to a more safe spot.
Eventually Lemos has to let go and weili is immediately back on the offensive, taking the back and landing ground-and-pound.
Lemos able to get back to her feet but then jumps on another choke attempt and they go back to the mat, but Weili escapes and is solid on top as the round ends.
Right hand for Lemos. Weili looking to counter. Good side kick to the body from Weili. Heavy right hand from Lemos, but Weili takes it well.
They clinch up and Weili slickly trips her to the mat in the center of the Octagon.
Weili in side-control and lands a shoulder shrug. Weili tries to work for the crucifix, then attempts to get to full mount as Lemos scrambles underneath. Weili settlees for half-guard but is soon trying to pass again. Lemos prevents that for now.
Weili postures up and lands a couple of elbows. Lemos tries to transition on top, but Weili prevents that and ends up getting her opponent’s back.
The champ opts to back on top in half-guard. Weili landing elbows. Now Lemos does well to work her way back to her feet, only to be brought straight back down again.
Weili in full-guard now and stacks up. Lemos rolls to her knees. Weili maintains her domaint position in the final seconds of the round.
Side kick to the body from Weili. Missed leg kick from Lemos. Missed head kick attempt from Weili. Weili pressuring. Lemos tries to land punches, but it’s Weili who finds a home for ers and then they clinch up.
Lemos looking to press the champ up against the cage, but Weili quickly reverses that and then lands a nice takedown. Weili opts to stand over her downed opponent and lands kicks to the legs before dropping back down.
Weili gets to side control. Lemos gets to her knees but Weili hops onto her back and tries to flatten her out, then rolls to her back. Lemos able to get her back to the mat.
Weili in half-guard then passes to side control. She goes to knee-on-belly. Lemos finds room to stand, but then eats elbows from Weili against the cage.
Relentless work from the champion here. She breaks away to land a few quick punches. At striking range Weili works a one-two. Now a step-in elbow for her.
Inside leg kick for Weili. Now a side kick to the body. Lemos looking for angles on the feet, but not letting her hands go. Leg kick for Weili.
Body kick for Weili and then back to the leg. Another side kick now. Inside leg kick is met by a counter-punch from Lemos.
Lemos gets through with a right hand. Jumping body kick from Weili. Oblique kick from Weili. Body punch from Weili, but Lemos lands a right hand too.
Weili goes for a kick, but eats a punch from Lemos that knocks her off-balance to the mat. Weili right back to her feet though.
Right hand gets through for Lemos. Now Weili connects with a right of her own. Great step in to the takedown from Weili and lands it well.
Lemos tries for a d’arce choke from her back and has it in, but again Weili gets free. Lemos able to find her way back to the feet and they go back to striking range.
Missed front kick upstairs from Lemos. She lands a right hand. Weili lands. Weili steps in again and is greeted by a big punch.
In close range Weili throws a hook. Nice punch for the champ. Final seconds of the round and Lemos charges forward throwing punches, but Weili backs up out of range.
Inside leg kick from Weili. Now a side kick to the body. She lands another. Now a standard body kick.
Weili blasts Lemos with a big right hand and drops her. Weili follows her down and starts landing hard punches. lemos scrambling to her knees under fire. Lemos trying to set up a submission, but Weili steers clear and continues to blast her with big punches.
Weili trapping an arm as shhe works more strikes. They end up in a bit of an awkward spot with Weili’s back against the cage with an arm still trapped as Lemos is on her knees.
Weili gets to the crucifix position, but Lemos continues to battle and manages to work back to her feet, only to be brought back down again.
Weili in side control. She lands a few rapid-fire knees to the body. Punches to the body from Weili but Lemos uses that space to stand back up.
They go to striking range in the final 15 seconds. Weili with a side kick to the body. Lemos drives into the clinch against the cage just as the fight comes to a close.
Excellent performance from Weili, showing off her all-round ability, particularly with strong wrestling and assured grappling, though she did also drop Lemos with a punch in the final round too. Lemos deserves credit for her fighting spirit though as she never gave up on herself and survived until the final bell, but the winner was never in doubt and weili earns a unanimous decision victory (50-43, 50-44, 49-45).