Cape Town - There is a new women's bantamweight title contender and her name is Valentina Shevchenko.
The former 17-time world kick boxing champion had the performance of her life on Saturday where she beat the former bantamweight champion Holly Holm in the main event of UFC on FOX 20 in Chicago. "The Bullet" walked away after with the win after showing some incredible counter striking and powerful takedowns against a very dangerous and game Holm.
With the victory a lot of the right people feel that Shevchenko will be next in line for a crack at the champion Amanda Nunes, a fighter who she has faced before.
At the post fight press conference Shevchenko (13-2) made it clear that the loss earlier this year to Nunes was a one off and that she is gunning for revenge.
"She's definitely scared," Shevchenko said in Chicago. "I'm ready for five rounds, for sure. I will take whoever I need to fight next. But I think she's definitely scared. I'm keeping my eyes on the bantamweight championship," she said.
"These are my plans. I hope to get my revenge against Amanda Nunes. I'll do my best to make sure this happens. I know perfectly well that I need to train hard. This I promise. I will always fight with all my heart in the Octagon."
In what was only her third octagon appearance Shevchenko has secured her spot as one of the best female bantamweights in the world. With promotional wins over Sarah Kaufman and now a former champion, a rematch with the woman who handed her only UFC loss would make a lot of sense, but with a rising star in Juliana Penà waiting in the wings who knows which direction the UFC will go.
One thing that is certain, though, Shevchenko is one to watch.