UFC 237: Jessica Andrade stuns Rose Namajunas to win women's strawweight tile

Andrade celebrates with her belt.
Andrade celebrates with her belt. Photo credit: Getty

Brazil's Jessica Andrade has emphatically delivered for her hometown faithful with a spectacular knockout victory over Rose Namajunas to claim the women's strawweight title at UFC 237 in Rio de Janeiro.

'Thug Rose' dictated proceedings in the opening round with her lightning jab and looked to be well in control when second stanza began.

But Andrade, already in desperation mode, instigated a clinch and proceeded to lift the American high above her shoulders, then bring her crashing to the mat in a brutal pile driver that immediately sent Namajunas limp and forced the referee to step in.

Andrade's slams Namajunas in the bout-ending move.
Andrade's slams Namajunas in the bout-ending move. Photo credit: Getty

"I was very certain of what I had to do in that second round," Andrade said in the post-fight interview. "You know, I had never thrown that move, I’d never pile-drived in the UFC.

"That’s my nickname, so I'm very happy to do that."

The 27-year-old's victory finally gave an increasingly frustrated crowd at the Jeunesse Arena something to cheer about, after all the Brazilian fighters on the undercard had fallen to defeat.

That included a horror ending for legendary middleweight champion Anderson Silva in his co-main event clash with Jared Cannonier.

The 44-year-old was crumpled by an inside leg kick from the American that buckled his knee and left him limping from the Octagon in pain with a TKO loss, casting doubt upon the off-contract great's future.

Earlier, former featherweight champion Brazilian Jose Aldo entered to defeaning cheers that Australian Alexander Volkanovski swiftly silenced.

A part-time pupil at Auckland's renowned City Kickboxing, 'The Great' fought a clinical bout to earn a shutout on the judge's scorecards and push himself deeper into the title picture.

Volkanovski made his intentions clear in the post-fight interview, laying down the challenge to recently defeated champion Max Holloway for a potential spot on the mooted Australia card later this year, which would feature Kiwi Israel Adesanya's middleweight title unification bout with Robert Whittaker.

The event's post-fight bonuses went to Andrade and Warlley Alves for performances of the night, while Andrade and Namajunas were awarded fight of the night.