Whether you’re looking at the ferocious striking attack, the stunning head kick or the standing rear-naked choke, there is only one word to describe Mariya Agapova’s (9-1) performance against Hannah Cifers (10-6) last weekend: dominant.
Coming out of the gate, Agapova pummeled Cifers with a steady drum roll of punches. She landed 36 strikes in what was barely two and a half minutes of fighting. Agapova’s six extra inches of reach made a clear appearance in the imbalanced bout. The head kick and submission that ended the fight were all but inevitable.
The outcome from UFC Vegas 2 sends the two fighters down very different paths. This was Cifers’ third loss of the year, one of which came only last month. Granted, she went up a weight class to fight Agapova, but it is certain Cifers will have a lot of work to do if she wants to be seen as a contender.
Agapova, on the other hand, is living up to the hype. She is the first female UFC fighter from Kazakhstan. If she keeps this up, they may only need the one. The sky is the limit at 23 years old.
She controlled the fight from many angles. Her technique and physicality won her the day, but her presence was just as dominant. Agapova looked confident and in control throughout the match, and this is sure to bring her a bigger name for her next fight.
With her first official UFC fight on the record, she definitely has a long road ahead of her to move up in the women’s flyweight division. As we saw later in the night, there is some fierce competition to be had near the top.
There is no doubt that fans will be looking to see more from Agapova in the coming months. The UFC moving her to the main card at the last second may have been a sign of things to come.