The World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts (WAMMA) plans to launch a new monthly poll to try and rank the best professional female mixed martial arts fighters in the world, it was announced today.
The rankings will be created for the following female weight classes: 125 pounds, 135 pounds, and 145 pounds.
WAMMA is probably best known for its monthly top ten rankings for male fighters, with Fedor Emelianenko serving as the WAMMA heavyweight champion, and Shinya Aoki serving as the current WAMMA lightweight champion.
Emelianenko successfully defended his WAMMA heavyweight title against Andrei Arlovski at Affliction's Day of Reckoning last month, winning by first round knockout. The WAMMA poll for male fighters is voted on by the media, but the organization has decided to change things around for its female poll.
"We are sure that the decision to conduct an industry poll for our female rankings will raise some eyebrows," WAMMA COO Mike Lynch said in a statement. "However, after an exhaustive search, it was determined that while there are many knowledgeable experts on the field of female MMA, most of them have an industry affiliation. Much like the NFL allows its players to vote in its Pro Bowl selections, WAMMA has elected to follow a similar model. We're going to allow the female fighting industry tell the world who its best fighters are."
Most casual MMA fans are aware of Gina Carano and Cris "Cyborg" Santos -- arguably the two faces of female MMA -- but most other female MMA fighters tend to compete in relative anonymity, so it should be interesting to see which other fighters are selected.
As a rather interesting aside, each WAMMA belt -- for the men at least -- costs around $4,000 to create, and the champions get a new title each time they defend. The WAMMA ring Emelianenko received during the weigh-ins of Day at Reckoning cost $17,000, and no other rings will be given out to champions.