Cat Zingano vs. Julianna Pena booked for UFC 200
A featured bout in the women’s bantamweight division for UFC 200 has been confirmed, as former title challenger Cat Zingano will return to action against "Ultimate Fighter" winner Julianna Pena.
UFC officials confirmed the matchup on Thursday.
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— UFC (@ufc) April 7, 2016
Zingano teased just recently that she had been booked for an "epic" matchup this summer and facing another top-ranked 135-pound fighter certainly would fit the bill.
Zingano has been out of action since losing to Ronda Rousey in February 2015, which marked the first loss of her professional career. Now Zingano is ready to reclaim a top spot in the division and a win at UFC 200 would go a long way toward putting her back in title contention.
Zingano holds a win over current champion Miesha Tate, but to even gain consideration for a title shot she’s going to have to go through one of the top-rated prospects in the division.
Pena is undefeated in her UFC campaign and most recently defeated Jessica Eye by decision at UFC 192 last October.
Pena was dealing with an arrest in December 2015 on assault charges, but she recently struck a deal with prosecutors in Spokane, Wash., and the UFC completed an investigation into the matter as well. Pena had previously stated she hoped to return by June as she continued her pursuit of a title shot.
Zingano vs. Pena is the latest fight to join a growing UFC 200 card that also includes Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz 2, Frankie Edgar vs. Jose Aldo 2, and Tate vs. Amanda Nunes.
UFC 200 is scheduled to take place July 9 at the new T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.