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28th Mar 2016

It’s official! Cris “Cyborg” Justino will be making her UFC debut this May

This is huge

Darragh Murphy

Just when you thought that the UFC’s women’s bantamweight division couldn’t get any more intriguing…

With Miesha Tate having just claimed UFC gold for the first time in her career, Holly Holm salivating at the prospect of regaining her belt, Ronda Rousey well on her way back to full health and Amanda Nunes having gone 3-0 in the promotion in her last three outings; the 135 lb division has quite literally never been healthier.

UFC 196: McGregor v Diaz

And it’s just gotten even more interesting with the news emerging on Monday evening that one of the most dangerous female fighters on the planet, Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino (15-1, 1 NC), had joined the UFC roster.

The Invicta featherweight champion is crossing over to the UFC for the first time for a catchweight match-up with Leslie Smith.

The bout takes place at May’s UFC 198 card in Curitiba, Brazil; an event which is headlined by a heavyweight title fight between Fabricio Werdum and Stipe Miocic.

Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg

Accustomed to fighting at 145 lbs, ‘Cyborg’ has been granted the chance to gradually drop down to 135 lbs as she meets Smith at 140 lbs on May 14. The UFC does not currently have a featherweight division for female fighters.

Back when former champion Rousey was thought to be unbeatable, ‘Cyborg’ was thought to be her ultimate foil but the pair could never agree upon a match-up.

But who’s to say that ‘Cyborg’ won’t end up welcoming ‘Rowdy’ back to the Octagon with an impressive victory over Smith in May?

One thing is for sure, though, and that is that this is a positive thing in terms of turning what once was one of the least competitive divisions in the promotion into one of the most.