Vanessa Guimarães Wins Strawweight Tournament Title At XFCi 6Strawweight striker Vanessa “Vanessinha” Guimarães scored the biggest win of her young MMA career on Saturday night at XFC International 6 in Araraquara, São Paulo, Brazil. Guimarães outpointed Vanessa “Miss Simpatia” Melo to win the XFC women’s strawweight tournament title.

XFCi 6 also featured the quarterfinal round of the promotion’s eight-woman flyweight title tournament. Taila Santos, Poliana Botelho, Debora Ferreira and Silvaneide “Marretinha” Pereira all advanced on to the semi-finals of the 125-pound championship tournament with key victories on Saturday’s card.


In the XFCi 6 co-feature, Guimarães (4-2-0) and Melo (3-3-0) fought back-and-forth on the feet for three entertaining rounds. Despite giving up a height and reach advantage to her opponent, Guimarães was the aggressor throughout the fight and she repeatedly scored with combinations of looping punches. She overcame leg and body kicks from Melo by pressing forward with overhand lefts and rights that found their mark and kept Melo on the defensive.

Melo drew cheers from the crowd when she landed a clean head kick in round two, but Guimarães continued to have success by ducking her head and throwing lengthy flurries of punches that backed Melo up. The clinch battles were relatively even in the final five minutes, but Guimarães kept Melo pinned against the cage on more than one occasion and her positional control and aggressive striking ultimately led her to victory.

After three rounds of action, the fight went to the scorecards. One judge incredibly scored the bout 30-27 for Melo. The remaining two sided with the rightful winner, Guimarães, with scores of 30-27 and 29-28. Guimarães’s Split Decision victory earned her the XFC Women’s Strawweight Tournament Championship. The talented 24-year-old has won four of her past five fights and she is 2-0 for XFCi.


Fast-rising prospect Taila Santos (4-0-0) kept her unblemished pro record intact with a one-sided victory over Rachael “The Panther” Cummins (2-2-0). It was Cummins who struck first by taking Santos down in the opening seconds and she tied up Santos’s leg in a calf slicer. Undeterred, Santos spent the majority of the round landing hammerfists while sitting on Cummins’s chest. She eventually freed her leg and passed to mount, then unloaded with punches from the top that overwhelmed Cummins and earned Santos a dominant TKO victory at the 4:28 mark.

Hard-hitting striker Poliana Botelho (3-1-0) earned another impressive knockout victory in her flyweight quarterfinal bout against Mexican prospect Karina Rodriguez (3-2-0). Botelho scored with uppercuts and a takedown in round one, and she mixed things up with power punches and a spinning back kick in round two. A bloodied Rodriguez soldiered on, but Botelho landed a devastating kick to the body in the third and final round that ended the fight in emphatic fashion at the 2:15 mark.

Earlier in the women’s flyweight tournament, 21-year-old Debora Ferreira (4-0-0) remained unbeaten with a Unanimous Decision victory over Russia’s Julia Borisova (3-1-0). The back-and-forth bout featured some excellent striking exchanges and both women were bloodied up by round three. After 15 minutes of action, the judges were united and all three scored the fight 29-28 for Ferreira, who remains one of Brazil’s brightest young talents at 125 pounds.

Opening up the tournament on Saturday, Silvaneide “Marretinha” Pereira (3-1-0) rebounded from her first career defeat with a close Majority Decision victory over Finland’s Vuokko Katainen (2-2-1). This fight also featured plenty of action and Pereira countered a slam from Katainen with big combinations in the final round. The competitive bout went to the scorecards and one judge saw it even at 29-29. The two remaining judges both had it 29-28 for Pereira, who joins Santos, Botelho and Ferreira in the next round of the 125-pound championship tournament.


  1. Such a shame this division is blooming after Megumi Fujii retired. I’d like to see how she’d fare, at her prime, against the likes of Calderwood, Tecia Torres, Gadelha, Esparza etc.
    One thing is for sure: some of these girls could challenge her.

    I don’t think she lost to Jessica Aguilar, and I am not sold on JAG being #1 in the division either.

  2. Agreed, Meg was the best at the time but was overtaken and would likely lose to the girls you mentioned.Jag is a great fighter that goes the distance and isn’t proven on the big stage. Sure wanted to see her in TUF though.