The former Invicta FC featherweight champion has suffered through a lot of setbacks since joining the UFC roster but a return home to Australia led to Anderson’s first definitive win inside the Octagon as she locked up a triangle choke to finish newcomer Zarah Fairn in the opening round on the preliminary card.
“I feel amazing,” Anderson said following the win. “My last couple fights I haven’t fought to my potential and tonight was about showing who I am as a fighter.
“I’m excited to see what’s next.”
An aggressive start from Fairn eventually led to Anderson latching onto a body lock, which then gave way to a well-timed takedown against the cage. Once she had the fight on the ground, Anderson advanced her position into the mount as she began raining down punches and elbows from the top.
One of the glancing elbows opened a cut on Fairn’s head as she tried to survive the barrage of shots dropping down on her.
The only escape for Fairn was trying to power out of the position but that backfired as she pulled free, Anderson was able to set up a perfectly placed triangle choke. Standing 6-foot-tall benefitted Anderson in that submission as she locked up her legs and Fairn had no option but to tap out.
The end came at 3:57 in the first round.
It was a massive win for Anderson, whose only other UFC victory came under bizarre circumstances when she kicked Cat Zingano and the fight was stopped due to a toe going into her opponent’s eye.
Now Anderson gets back on track with a submission victory — her first since 2014 — as she continues to establish herself in the UFC’s featherweight division.