Mazdyuk was propelled to global attention in MMA circles when she took on blogger Grigory Chistyakov in an intergender ‘freakshow’ bout in 2020, finishing her 529-pound (240kg) rival after a barrage of punches in the first round.
Dubbed ‘The Red Queen’, Russian fighter Mazdyuk earned a Bellator deal off the back of the attention that fight earned, and admitted this week that her conscious efforts to build up hype had paid off.
But returning to more conventional forms of combat in the cage (and against a far smaller opponent), the flame-haired Mazdyuk failed to impress on her Bellator bow as she met Poland’s Katarzyna Sadura in a flyweight bout at the VTB Arena in Moscow.
In front of an expectant home crowd for Mazdyuk, both fighters came out of the traps quickly in the first round, launching a flurry of punches and low-kicks but with neither doing significant damage.
By the early stages of the second round the pace had already slackened significantly, with Sadura enjoying more and more success – especially with her overhand right.
After the entire fight had remained on the feet, the 30-year-old Pole dropped a tired-looking Mazdyuk with a combination of punches inside the last two minutes of the round.
Sadura then followed up with hammerfists as Mazdyuk curled up, causing referee Kevin MacDonald to step in and stop the bout.