5 female fighters who were left completely disfigured with one punched 236 times
It goes without saying that combat sports are brutal – the clue is sort of in the name.
But just how brutal can sometimes be understated.
For all fighters, whether they be boxers or mixed martial artists, stepping into the ring – or octagon – brings with it the potential for great reward but also great risk.
The reward is the spoils of victory; the risk is not just losing but doing yourself serious harm in the process.
Miriam Gutierrez, Ebanie Bridges, Cheyenne Hanson, Weili Zhang and Joanna Jedrzejczyk are five warriors who know all about that.
All of them have suffered some kind of facial disfigurement as a result of their fighting exploits, as Daily Star Sport discover.
Aussie boxing star Ebanie Bridges was left with a gruesome eye injury following her defeat to Shannon Courtenay in April 2021.
Bridges, who has developed a reputation for flustering Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn at press conferences, was left looking horribly disfigured after her loss at the Copper Box in London.
What's the worst facial injury you've ever seen in the boxing ring? Let us know in the comments section below.
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Remarkably, the Blonde Bomber commented mid-fight that she could not see out of her eye as it swelled up, but she still continued on.
By the end, her left peeper had turned purple due to the swelling, and several days later, the bloodshot eye left her looking like the Terminator.
Thankfully she fully recovered from the accidental head-butt which led to her temporary disfigurement, and has since gone on to beat Bec Connolly, Mailys Gangloff and make Hearn blush once more.
Spanish fighter Miriam Gutierrez fought on the undercard of Jake Paul v Tyron Woodley, but it was her face, not that of the YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake, that ended up going viral online.
That's because her opponent, seven-weight world champion Amanda Serrano, inflicted a brutal beating on her, landing 236 punches to Gutierrez's face in as one-sided a fight as you're ever likely to see.
The 38-year-old looked barely recognisable after the fight, but in an Instagram post on Christmas Eve, she suggested that her recovery was going well.
Mid-way through the emotional upload, Gutierrez proclaimed: "But I never give up !!! I'm fine !!!! Very well ! But by God before making destructive criticisms and being so miserable!!!"
Joanna Jedrzejczyk was left with a disfigured face after playing her part in arguably the greatest female MMA fight of all time, which her opponent Weili Zhang (more on her later) won thanks to a narrow points verdict.
The Polish bruiser looked completely unrecognisable at the final bell, with her forehead swelling up to over twice its normal size as a result of the insane punishment she took inside the Octagon.
When the swelling eventually went down, her face was left covered in bruises, but remarkably within 18 days of the fight, any marks she had sustained had disappeared, making her look normal again.
UFC president Dana White praised Jedrzejczyk and Zhag for their efforts in the enthralling contest, branding it "an incredible fight".
German boxer Cheyenne Hanson sustained a facial injury that was so bad during her fight with Alina Zaitseva that the bout actually had to be abandoned.
Despite this, she was still awarded the victory with rules dictating that any fight that ends early due to a clash of heads should be decided by the current scores of the ringside judges – which at the time had Hanson ahead.
Hanson, 23, soon felt the full force of the clash of heads with the side of her face ballooning to make her look more like Megamind than a professional boxer.
'Pepper' as she is otherwise known, posted a before and after picture on social media to demonstrate just how much her face had swollen up.
She captioned one picture, where the swelling also featured severe bruising: "You don‘t play boxing." Hanson has fought three times since the incident, most recently against Ilka Adam in November, winning via TKO.
Remember Joanna Jedrzejczyk from earlier on? Well, her opponent – and the eventual fight winner – Weili Zhang didn't escape disfigurement in their brutal contest either.
Zhang looked like an oil painting compared to her battered and bruised Polish counterpart, but she still bore the scars of their UFC classic all over her face.
The 32-year-old also suffered a fair degree of bruising, although nothing like Jedrzejczyk, who took a full 18 days to recover from the battle.
Zhang won the fight 48-47 on two judges' cards, while Jedrzejczyk won 48-47 on the third, as both fighters received a two-month medical suspension from the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
'Magnum' has lost both of her fights since that epic against Jedrzejczyk, twice suffering defeats to Rose Namajunas who now holds the UFC Women's Strawweight Championship.
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