Leslie Smith vs Rin Nakai Added To UFC Fight Night 85 CardA second women’s bout has been added to the upcoming UFC Fight Night 85: “Hunt vs Mir” event on March 20th in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Former Invicta FC contender Leslie “The Peacemaker” Smith battles Queen of Pancrase Rin Nakai in bantamweight action on the preliminary card.

UFC officials announced the matchup on Wednesday. Smith has not fought since suffering a gruesome ear injury in her loss to Jessica “Evil” Eye at UFC 180 in November 2014. Likewise, Nakai sat out all of 2015 after she was defeated in her September 2014 UFC debut by Miesha “Cupcake” Tate.

Smith (7-6-1) fought six times for Invicta FC between April 2012 and December 2013, and she became one of the promotion’s most popular fighters thanks to multiple Fight of the Night wars. Her 3-2-1 Invicta FC record included victories over Raquel “Rocky” Pennington and Jennifer Maia, and a contentious Split Decision loss to former Strikeforce champion Sarah Kaufman. After suffering a second loss to Kaufman in a UFC rematch, Smith earned her first Octagon win by stopping Jessamyn “The Gun” Duke at UFC Fight Night 45. Her ear was nearly severed in the bout with Eye, which was waved off in round two.

Nakai (16-1-1) has been a polarising figure in Japan throughout her career, which spans multiple weight classes and dates back to her pro debut in October 2006. The eccentric Nakai became Valkyrie’s first and only open-weight champion in late 2010, and went on to make history by becoming the inaugural Bantamweight Queen of Pancrase two years later. After picking up wins over Tara LaRosa and Sarah “The Monster” D’Alelio, Nakai signed with the UFC and debuted at UFC Fight Night 52, but she was outpointed by Tate and subsequently disappeared from the public eye for most of the past 17 months.

UFC Fight Night 85: “Hunt vs Mir” takes place on March 20th at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. The event is headlined by a heavyweight bout between Mark “Super Samoan” Hunt and former champion Frank Mir, and also features a women’s strawweight matchup between Seo Hee Ham and “Rowdy” Bec Rawlings.



(Photo Credit: UFC)