International stars collide on July 28th when Strikeforce veteran Amanda “Lioness of the Ring” Nunes takes on Milana Dudieva at Invicta Fighting Championships 2 in Kansas City, Kansas. The featured bantamweight matchup was announced for the event’s main card earlier today.
Brazil’s Nunes has tasted defeat just once in her past seven fights, with all six of her wins coming via a form of knockout. Her lengthy winning streak came to an end in September at the hands of Alexis Davis. Dudieva has competed exclusively in her native Russia and has not lost since 2009.
Nunes (6-2-0) suffered a disappointing submission loss in her pro debut, but bounced back with a trio of first-round TKO victories. In December 2009, she took a big step up in competition and passed the test with flying colours by stopping compatriot Vanessa Porto at the end of round two. A dominant TKO of Ediane Gomes earned Nunes a Strikeforce contract and she made an instant impact by knocking out Canadian striker Julia Budd in just 14 seconds at Strikeforce Challengers 13. Talk turned to a title fight between Nunes and then-champion Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos, but Nunes instead opted to return to 135 pounds to face Davis. The bout did not go her way and she was stopped in the second round.
Dudieva (8-1-0) remains relatively unknown among fans in North America, but she has built up a respectable résumé in Russia while competing under the ProFC banner. After fighting five times in 2009, Dudieva faced her toughest test to date at ProFC 22 in 2010. Following three rounds of back-and-forth action, Dudieva was awarded a close but Unanimous Decision win over Germany’s Sheila Gaff. As a result of fight cancellations and a lack of available opponents, Dudieva has competed just twice since the fight with Gaff. She most recently earned a 24-second TKO win over Danielle West this past month and looks to carry the momentum into her Invicta FC and U.S. debut.
Both Nunes and Dudieva are highly regarded for their power, though each possesses a unique skill set. Nunes is one of the top strikers at 135 pounds and has solid ground and pound. Dudieva’s judo throws have allowed her to take down most of her opponents, where the armbar is her preferred method of finish. With Dudieva’s improved striking and Nunes’s underrated jiu-jitsu, the matchup appears to be an even one on paper and will likely determine a top contender in the Invicta FC bantamweight division.
Invicta Fighting Championships 2 takes place on July 28th at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kansas.