Bec Rawlings, Leslie Smith Victorious At UFC Fight Night 85Hometown star “Rowdy” Bec Rawlings picked up a close decision victory in featured strawweight action on Sunday afternoon at UFC Fight Night 85: “Hunt vs Mir” in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Rawlings narrowly edged out Seo Hee Ham in a bout that was closer than the scores suggested.

Elsewhere at UFC Fight Night 85, Leslie “The Peacemaker” Smith earned a hard-fought Unanimous Decision victory over Queen of Pancrase Rin Nakai, who nearly finished the fight with a second-round arm-triangle choke. Smith did just enough to take a razor-thin win on the official scorecards.


Rawlings (7-4-0) threw left hooks early in the opening round, but Ham (16-7-0) held a clear edge in speed and she repeatedly tagged Rawlings with combinations. A right hook from Rawlings led to an exchange of power punches in close. Rawlings connected with another left hand late in the close round, but Ham took her back before time expired.

Ham landed a series of counterpunches and front kicks to the body in round two as Rawlings struggled to find her range. She eventually landed a combination and took Ham down after catching a body kick. Ham attacked with a triangle choke attempt from her back, but Rawlings escaped and she worked for a rear-naked choke and an armbar. Ham scrambled free and she landed some solid punches to the head and body after the fighters returned to their feet.

The fight appeared to be even after two rounds and Ham landed body kicks and flurries as Rawlings slowed down in round three. Ham stuffed a takedown and transitioned to an armbar and a triangle choke on the ground. Rawlings eventually escaped and battled back to her feet, but Ham kept the pressure on with punches to the head and body. Both women landed knees in a lengthy clinch against the fence.

Ham’s strong final round appeared to be enough to clinch a victory in her favour, but all three cageside judges disagreed. One saw the fight 29-28 for Rawlings, while the remaining two turned in controversial 30-27 scorecards for the hometown fighter. Rawlings has won back-to-back fights inside the Octagon.

Winner: Bec Rawlings by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) after three rounds. She improves to 7-4-0.


In a bantamweight showdown, Smith (8-6-1) narrowly outpointed Nakai (16-2-1) in a fight that was also marred by controversial scoring from one cageside judge. Smith kept Nakai at bay with stiff jabs and right hands in the opening round, and she repeatedly thwarted Nakai’s takedown attempts. After an exchange of power punches, Nakai tried for a standing guillotine choke, but Smith finished the round strong with a combination.

Nakai took Smith down right away in round two and she moved to side control. Smith countered with an inverted triangle choke from the bottom, but Nakai pulled her head out and showed off her formidable ground game by trapping Smith in a tight arm-triangle choke. Smith appeared to be on the verge of unconsciousness, but she pressed off of the cage and managed to escape. On the feet, Smith landed two head kicks, but Nakai took her back down and scored with ground and pound.

Smith stuffed Nakai’s takedown attempts early in the final round and she repeatedly tagged Nakai with one-two combinations. When Nakai finally closed the distance, she snapped Smith’s head back with a series of short but powerful uppercuts. Smith dropped her with a right hand, but Nakai quickly recovered and she worked for takedowns until she was able to get Smith down into side control.

The close bout went to the scorecards and one judge returned an absurd 30-27 tally for Smith. The remaining two turned in more reasonable scores of 29-28 in favour of Smith, who earned a much-needed victory in her first fight since November 2014.

Winner: Leslie Smith by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) after three rounds. She improves to 8-6-1.



(Photo Credit: UFC)

  1. So silly and sad to watch. Nakai and Ham both won their fights and got robbed of the victory. The UFC will find it more difficult to sign international women if this pattern continues.