Cat Zingano returns against Amanda Nunes at UFC 178 in September

After more than a year away, Cat Zingano will begin her comeback on the Jones-Gustafsson card in Las Vegas.

Cat Zingano (left) and Amanda Nunes meet in a potential title eliminator in September.

Josh Hedges & Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Cat Zingano's comeback starts now.

The top UFC women's bantamweight contender will return to the Octagon against Amanda Nunes at UFC 178 on Sept. 27 in Las Vegas, the UFC announced Thursday morning. Zingano has not fought since April 2013 when she beat Miesha Tate in a women's bantamweight title eliminator.

It has been a long road since then for Zingano (8-0). She tore her ACL shortly after, harpooning her appearance across from champion Ronda Rousey as coaches on The Ultimate Fighter 18. Tate took her place and lost to Rousey in December. A month later, Zingano's husband and trainer Mauricio committed suicide. Zingano just got back to training within the last few months.

Overall, the 32-year-old remains undefeated as a pro with notable wins over Tate, Raquel Pennington and Barb Honchak. Zingano remains ranked No. 1 in the UFC among women's bantamweight contenders.

Nunes (9-3) has won two straight in the UFC with TKO wins over Germaine de Randamie and Sheila Gaff. The 26-year-old Brazilian is No. 8 in the UFC women's bantamweight contender rankings.

It's foreseeable that the winner of this fight could get the next shot at Rousey in December, the champ's target return date after beating Alexis Davis in 16 seconds at UFC 175 on Saturday in Las Vegas.

UFC 178 is headlined by a light heavyweight title rematch between Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson. Dominick Cruz-Takeya Mizugaki and Tim Kennedy-Yoel Romero are also booked for the Las Vegas card.

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