Former UFC women’s bantamweight title contender Cat Zingano will be making her return to the cage on March 11, but “Alpha” won’t be fighting fellow UFC export and current Bellator 145-pound champion Cristiane Justino.
“Hearing Cris Cyborg is refusing to drug test,” Zingano wrote on Twitter. “I have been told my opponent and that it’s a number one contender match set for March 11. That’ll give someone plenty of time to get their shit together enough to fight me by summer.”
Zingano (12-4) won her Bellator debut back in Sept. 2020 by scoring a unanimous decision victory over Gabrielle Holloway. “Alpha” followed that up with a submission win over Olivia Parker the following April to secure what was believed to be the next featherweight title shot.
So what happened?
“I have accepted a fight with her but it got declined so we are waiting to see what is next for me,” Justino told James Lynch. “I have asked Bellator about [March 11], I am open to this date. I don’t choose my opponents. For me everyone is saying that Cat Zingano is going to be next. So when she announced she was going to fight 11th, okay, so it’s us. But I hear she wants to do one more fight before our fight.”
Zingano previously declined a fight against the Brazilian back in 2017.
Justino (25-2, 1 NC) captured four straight wins — all by way of knockout or submission — after crossing over to Bellator in early 2020. “Cyborg” is widely considered one of the greatest female fighters in MMA history, but has struggled to step out of the PED shadow cast by her positive drug test back in 2012.
Bellator has yet to make an official announcement.