UFC fighter beats up would be mugger. Courtesy: KTNV Channel 13 Las Vegas.

UFC fighter beats up would be mugger. Courtesy: KTNV Channel 13 Las Vegas.

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UFC star Polyana Viana has blasted reports she is wanted by cops after beating up a robber.

The 26-year-old left a man with horrific facial injuries after he tried to rob her with a cardboard gun, The Sun reports.

And the cowering thief even begged her to call the cops in fear of another beating.

Various reports in Brazil and messages spread on social media speculated that a prosecutor had ordered her arrest for the self-defence action.

But the Brazilian sports star posted on Instagram to rebuke the claims that she is a wanted woman.

View this post on Instagram

01/01/2019 Bem vindo ❤️

A post shared by Polyana Viana (Dama de Ferro) (@polyanaviana) on

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Shortly thereafter cops arrived on the scene and arrested the well-beaten attempted thief.

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UFC president Dana White took to Instagram shortly after the incident writing: “On the left is @polyanaviana, one of our @UFC fighters and on the right is the guy who tried to rob her #badf—ingidea.”

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On Wednesday, White went a step further in his praise for Viana by setting up her next fight. The 115-pound strawweight will take on Hannah Cifers (8-3) at UFC 235 on March 3 in Las Vegas, according to ESPN.

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This article originally appeared in the New York Post and has been re-published with permission.

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“Early next year I could definitely be right up there for a Polyana Viana hits back at rumour about her encounter with a robber shot.”

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That was an unranked Alexander Volkanovski speaking to foxsports.com.au in February of last year. Eleven months on, and the Aussie has kept his promise.

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A little over a week after a stunning finish of perennial featherweight contender Chad Mendes, and Volkanovski is now unquestionably Australia’s most realistic shot at a second champion in the UFC.

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He’s 6-0 since his 2016 debut in the organisation, 19-1 on his career, and now the No. 4 ranked contender in the 145-division; only behind current champ Max Holloway, Brian Ortega, Jose Aldo, and Frankie Edgar.

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It’s elite company, but nothing Volkanovski, on a 16-fight win streak, hasn’t already seen for himself. In truth, he’s had to be his own biggest fan for a while now. Before the Mendes win, he hadn’t received the “push” from the UFC that others had.

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But a win on the main card of the organisation’s final pay-per-view of 2018 was all Volkanovski needed.

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After being knocked down by Mendes in the second, the no-nonsense brawler out of Shellharbour got back up and finished his opponent in the same round.

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“I knew exactly what was going on the whole time — I knew even after he got me down, I knew to stay on him,” Volkanovski told foxsports.com.au.

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“I just put the pressure straight back on, and I could see him crumbling.”

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Volkanovski became only the fourth man to beat Mendes in the Octagon; behind Jose Aldo (twice), Conor McGregor, and Frankie Edgar. Again, not bad company.

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It was a fight he’d been begging for. Ever since arriving in the UFC, Volkanovski has called for bigger tests. And now, after announcing himself as a legitimate contender, the Aussie wants more.

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With Aldo fighting Renato Moicano in February, and Ortega having just been beaten to a pulp by Holloway, who is said to be considering a move to 155-pounds, there aren’t many top-ranked opponents available.

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“Frankie Edgar, if he wanted to do it in Melbourne [at UFC 234 in February], I’d do it,” Volkanovski said.

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“Max Holloway, if he wants to do it, we’ll do it, no worries at all.”

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The point is, Volkanovski wants to fight. And he doesn’t particularly care who against.

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But he’s always been that way.

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Volkanovski’s first four amateur fights came at middleweight. A 5’6” middleweight bouncing around the cage is a ridiculous image, until you realise he won every fight at 185-pounds.

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He then began his professional career at welterweight; the only loss of Volkanovski’s career coming at a weight he should never have been fighting at in the first place.

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@JonnyBones I’m coming for that belt!! Ever wondered what a featherweight would look like fighting at light heavyweight? 👀 #fathead @ufc pic.twitter.com/BXsU1ekBZT

— Alex Volkanovski (@alexvolkanovski) January 5, 2019

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Volkanovski claims he was over 200-pounds during his rugby league days, where the Warilla Gorilla (his team name, not a nickname) played front rower.

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For the former concreter, who pocketed a nifty $50k bonus for Fight of the Night at UFC 232, the motivation is simple.

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“I do this for my family,” Volkanovski said.

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“Obviously it was a career path that I chose before I had kids because I loved it. But now I’ve got a family, and family is No. 1 to me.”

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Volkanovski, who spent New Years Eve flying back home instead of celebrating his win in Los Angeles, added: “Right now I fight for my family. I need to be successful in my career, and that’s fighting, to look after them.

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“And I need to look after them for the rest of my life, and I’ve only got a few years to do it, so bring it on. Bring on the challengers, I need to do it quick.”

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After grinding to the top, Volkanovski, understandably, wants things to pick up from here.

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He’s been close to flawless through six fights in the UFC; Mendes the first to even somewhat rock him.

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“Now I’m getting the push,” Volkanovski said.

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“The UFC, I think, see something. Obviously they’re just shooting me through these ranks now — giving me good fights, big fights. So they see something special, only up from here.

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“I’ll be champion in 2019.”

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