The #2 ranked women’s pound-for-pound fighter and UFC flyweight champion will be getting back to work. It has been confirmed by the UFC that Valentina “Bullet” Shevchenko will be defending her flyweight strap at UFC 251 against the #3 ranked contender Joanne “JoJo” Calderwood.
Here is an announcement tweet by the UFC:
UFC 251 is scheduled take place on Saturday, June 6, in Perth, Australia. It has not been confirmed if Shevchenko and Calderwood will be in the main event or co-main event. There are rumours that UFC flyweight champion Alexander Volkanovski will rematch Max Holloway in Perth as well.
Interestingly, the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation issued Shevchenko a medical suspension until August 7, 2020. The governing body didn’t reveal why Bullet received such a long suspension, but she has seemingly been cleared by a doctor.
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Shevchenko Is Coming Off a Dominating Victory Over Katlyn Chookagian at UFC 247
Bullet fought on February 8 in the co-main event of UFC 247. She took on the #1 contender Katlyn Chookagian, and she only needed three rounds to defend her title. After dominating most of the fight, Shevchenko was able to finish Chookagian via strikes.
After the she got her hand raised, it was unclear who her next opponent would be. Calderwood was the highest ranked opponent that wasn’t booked or had fought Shevchenko. Other possible contenders for Shevchenko were Lauren Murphy, who won at UFC 247 as well, and Roxanne Modafferi.
Since winning the women’s flyweight strap in December of 2018, Bullet has defended the belt three times by defeating Jessica Eye, Liz Carmouche and Chookagian. The flyweight queen has a professional MMA record of 19-3 with six finishes by KO or TKO and seven finishes by submission.
Joanne Calderwood Is Scheduled For Her First Ever Title Fight
Since returning to the women’s flyweight division in August of 2018, JoJo has gone 3-1, including wins over Andrea Lee, Ariane Lipski and Kalindra Faria. She has never fought for a UFC title. She has a professional record of 14-4, with five wins coming via knockout or TKO, and one by submission.
JoJo last stepped in the Octagon on September 7 during UFC 242. She took on Andrea Lee, winning a split decision in the featured preliminary bout.
The Scottish Calderwood is a fan favorite. She participated in the “The Ultimate Fighter: A Champion Will Be Crowned,” when the UFC added the strawweight division. JoJo won her first fight on the show, but then lost her second to the future UFC Strawweight Champion Rose Namajunas.