Yana Kunitskaya

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Yana Kunitskaya
Born (1989-11-11) November 11, 1989 (age 28)
Murmansk, Murmansk Oblast, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Other names Foxy
Nationality Russian
Height 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight 135 lb (61 kg; 9.6 st)
Division Featherweight
Reach 64.0 in (163 cm)
Style Taekwondo, Boxing, Muay Thai
Fighting out of Saint Petersburg, Russia
Team Jackson Wink MMA Academy
Mixed martial arts record
Total 15
Wins 10
By knockout 7
By submission 1
By decision 2
Losses 4
By knockout 1
By submission 2
By decision 1
No contests 1
Other information
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Yana Kunitskaya is a Russian mixed martial artist in the Bantamweight division in Invicta Fighting Championship.[1]


Kunitskaya was born in 1989, in the city of Murmansk. Her mother, Olga Kunitskaya, was a professional gymnast and her father, Joseph, was a professional skier. She has a younger sister, Victoria. Yana became involved in martial arts early on in her childhood. She has over 12 years of experience competing in taekwondo and has won numerous tournaments among both girls and boys, with many fights ending in knockouts.[2] At 12 years old, she began competing in hand-to-hand combat (рукопашный бой), participating in a large number of fights without suffering a single defeat. When she was 16 years old, Yana went to live and study in St. Petersburg, she entered the SPGUFK team. Lesgafta, Department of boxing. At age 18, she started practicing mixed martial arts.

On August 9, 2012, Kunitskaya announced that she was pregnant with her first child.[3]

In August 2013, Kunitskaya announced the end of her sports career and the transition to coaching but would later come out of retirement from fighting 3 years later.[4]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Kunitskaya made her professional mixed martial arts debut on May 23, 2009 at a K-1 World Grand Prix event in Poland. She defeated Magdalena Jarecka by TKO in the first round.

After winning two of her next three fights, Kunitskaya faced unbeaten prospect Cindy Dandois at M-1 Challenge XXII on December 10, 2010. She defeated Dandois by TKO in just 34 seconds.[5]

On November 19, 2011, Kunitskaya faced Arune Lauzeckaite at Bushido Hero's - World Grand Prix Lithuania. She defeated Lauzeckaite by TKO in the first round.[6]

Kunitskaya faced Ekaterina Saraykina at Verdict Fighting Championship 1 on February 11, 2012.[7] She defeated Saraykina by TKO in round one.[8]

She then faced Anna Melikhova at Lion's Fights 1 on March 3, 2012[9] and defeated Melikhova by unanimous decision after two rounds.[10]

On June 15, 2012, Kunitskaya defeated Sylwia Kusiak by TKO in round one at Baltic Arena in Koszalin, Poland.[11]

She was scheduled to face Danielle West at Starlight Events: Gladiator World Cup 2012 on July 6 in Marbella, Spain,[11] but the event was cancelled.[12]

Prior to joining Invicta FC Yana fought almost exclusively in Russia.[13][14] Kunitskaya would build her record to 9 wins and 2 losses before signing to Invicta FC.

Invicta FC[edit]

Yana defeated Tonya Evinger for the Invicta FC Bantamweight title on November 18, 2016.[15][16] On December 1, 2016 the win was overturned to a no contest, so Evinger retained her title.[17]

Kunitskaya faced Evinger in a rematch in the main event of Invicta FC 22 on March 25, 2017. She lost the fight by submission in the second round.

Kunitskaya defeated Raquel Pa'aluhi at Invicta FC 25 on August 31, 2017 to win the vacant Invicta FC Bantamweight Championship.

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

Kunitskaya made her UFC debut on March 3, 2018, against Cris Cyborg at UFC 222 for the featherweight title.[18] She lost the fight via technical knockout.[19]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 10–4 (1) Cris Cyborg TKO (punches) UFC 222 March 3, 2018 1 3:25 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States For the UFC Women's Featherweight Championship.
Win 10–3 (1) Raquel Pa'aluhi Decision (unanimous) Invicta FC 25: Kunitskaya vs. Pa'aluhi August 31, 2017 5 5:00 Lemoore, California, United States Won the vacant Invicta FC Bantamweight Championship. Performance of the Night.
Loss 9–3 (1) Tonya Evinger Submission (rear-naked choke) Invicta FC 22: Evinger vs. Kunitskaya II March 25, 2017 2 4:32 Kansas City, Missouri, United States For the Invicta FC Bantamweight Championship.
NC 9–2 (1) Tonya Evinger NC (overturned) Invicta FC 20: Evinger vs. Kunitskaya November 18, 2016 1 1:59 Kansas City, Missouri, United States For the Invicta FC Bantamweight Championship. Originally a submission (armbar) win for Kunitskaya; overturned after Evinger appealed the loss due to a controversial referee call. Performance of the Night.
Win 9–2 Yanan Wu TKO (punches) Fightspirit Championship 6 September 4, 2016 2 0:32 St. Petersburg, Russia Bantamweight debut.
Loss 8–2 Zaira Dyshekova Submission (armbar) ACB 32: Battle of Lions March 26, 2016 1 3:38 Moscow, Russia Catchweight (137 lbs) bout.
Win 8–1 Sylwia Kusiak TKO (corner stoppage) Baltic Arena June 15, 2012 1 0:50 Koszalin, Poland
Win 7–1 Anna Melikhova Decision (unanimous) Lion's Fights 1: The Beginning March 3, 2012 2 5:00 St. Petersburg, Russia
Win 6–1 Ekaterina Saraykina TKO (punches) Verdict Fighting Championship 1 February 11, 2012 1 1:05 Moscow, Russia
Win 5–1 Arune Lauzeckaite TKO (punches) Bushido Lithuania: Hero's Lithuania 2011 November 19, 2011 1 1:34 Vilnius, Lithuania
Win 4–1 Cindy Dandois TKO (punches) M-1 Challenge 22 December 10, 2010 1 0:34 Moscow, Russia Featherweight bout.
Win 3–1 Kamila Bałanda TKO (punches) Bushido Lithuania: Hero's Lithuania 2010 November 20, 2010 1 4:26 Vilnius, Lithuania
Loss 2–1 Maria Hougaard Djursaa Decision (unanimous) FG 14: Ice Cold May 29, 2010 3 5:00 Odense, Denmark
Win 2–0 Vladena Yavorskaya Submission (rear-naked choke) Bushido FC Legends November 28, 2009 1 3:20 St. Petersburg, Russia
Win 1–0 Magdalena Jarecka TKO (punches) K-1 World Grand Prix 2009 May 23, 2009 1 1:38 Łódź, Poland


  1. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya exclusive interview". Retrieved 19 November 2016. 
  2. ^ https://www.mmafighting.com/2018/3/2/17070102/who-is-yana-kunitskaya-ufc-222s-mystery-headliner
  3. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya Announces Pregnancy, Out Until Mid-2013". MMARising.com. 2012-08-09. Retrieved 2012-08-11. 
  4. ^ "Яна Куницкая: «Займусь ли я еще своей спортивной карьерой – точно сказать не могу»". Retrieved 5 March 2017. 
  5. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya Upsets Cindy Dandois At M-1 Challenge 22". MMARising.com. 2010-12-10. Retrieved 2011-10-08. 
  6. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya Stops Arune Lauzeckaite At Bushido Hero's". MMARising.com. 2011-11-19. Retrieved 2011-11-19. 
  7. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya Faces Ekaterina Saraykina At Verdict FC 1". MMARising.com. 2011-12-16. Retrieved 2011-12-16. 
  8. ^ "Weekend Recap: Yana Kunitskaya Victorious At Verdict FC 1". MMARising.com. 2012-02-12. Retrieved 2012-02-12. 
  9. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya To Face Anna Melikhova At Lion's Fights 1". MMARising.com. 2012-02-02. Retrieved 2012-02-08. 
  10. ^ "Weekend Recap: Yana Kunitskaya Wins, Esparza-Magana Off". MMARising.com. 2012-03-05. Retrieved 2012-03-09. 
  11. ^ a b "Yana Kunitskaya vs Danielle West Targeted For July 6 In Spain". MMARising.com. 2012-06-15. Retrieved 2012-06-15. 
  12. ^ "Weekend Recap: Kunitskaya vs West Scrapped, Promoter Jailed". MMARising.com. 2012-07-08. Retrieved 2012-07-08. 
  13. ^ MMARising.com. "Yana Kunitskaya Stops Arune Lauzeckaite At Bushido Hero's - MMARising.com". Retrieved 19 November 2016. 
  14. ^ "Yana Kunitskaya Still Revelling in Victory Over Dandois - Fight Network". Retrieved 19 November 2016. 
  15. ^ "Champ Tonya Evinger vs. Yana Kunitskaya, Champ Angela Hill vs. Kaline Medeiros headline Invicta FC 20". 13 October 2016. Retrieved 19 November 2016. 
  16. ^ Raimondi, Marc (19 November 2016). "Invicta 20 results: Kunitskaya stuns champ Evinger". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 22 November 2016. 
  17. ^ "Tonya Evinger successfully appeals shocking Invicta FC 20 loss, is once again bantamweight champ". 1 December 2016. Retrieved 15 January 2017. 
  18. ^ "Cris Cyborg vs. Yana Kunitskaya, Frankie Edgar vs. Brian Ortega scheduled for UFC 222". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2018-02-08. 
  19. ^ "UFC 222 results: Cris Cyborg tested early, but takes out Yana Kunitskaya in first". MMAjunkie. 2018-03-04. Retrieved 2018-03-04. 

External links[edit]