JOANNA JEDRZEJCZYK received a touching message from Zhang Weili after their stunning battle at UFC 248.
The Polish star was rushed to hospital after suffering a huge hematoma to her forehead in her Las Vegas loss.
The fight for the strawweight title lived up to its billing and has been widely-acclaimed as the greatest MMA fight in women’s history.
A haematoma is a large bruise under the skin, when blood causes a major swelling which often needs to be drained surgically.
Zhang, who was also taken to hospital afterwards, retained her strawweight title at UFC 248 via split decision.
And afterwards the first-ever Chinese UFC champion was full of praise for the ex-title holder.
The 30-year-old Zhang said: “I respect each of my opponents.
“Other people's failure will not make me happy.
“My confidence is built on my training and my team. @joannajedrzejczyk is a very powerful martial artist.
“In the end, the octagon does not need garbage, we worked together and the battle was great.”
Jedrzejczyk’s performance against Zhang was made even more impressive by the fact she fought most of the fight with the massive haematoma to the right side of her head.
UFC president Dana White led the plaudits afterwards, tweeting “F***ing incredible fight!”.
The Polish challenger’s forehead began to swell in the third round and by the fourth the lump had swollen even more.
But the warriors continued on until the final bell in a display of grit, skill and pure guts.
Both stars' bodies showed the fierceness of the clash post-fight – but it was Jedrzejczyk grotesquely swollen head that had everyone talking.