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Valentina Shevchenko vs. Joanne Calderwood targeted for UFC 251

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Reigning UFC women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko’s next title defense is nearly finalized.

MMA: UFC 247-Shevchenko vs Chookagian Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Less than two weeks after another dominant title performance, UFC women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko has her next opponent lined up.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported on Wednesday that Shevchenko has agreed to fight Scotland’s Joanne Calderwood at UFC 251 on June 6th. No official announcement has been made, but one can only assume that it’s imminent.

Shevchenko (19-3) won the title back in 2018 with a unanimous decision over Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 231. Since then, she’s knocked out Jessica Eye, shut out Liz Carmouche to avenge a controversial defeat from 2010, and most recently dominated and TKO’d Katlyn Chookagian at this month’s UFC 247. Her only losses in the UFC have been by decision against current two-division champ Amanda Nunes.

It’s hard to see which current 125 lbs fighters can give Shevchenko anything resembling a competitive bout, but Calderwood (14-4) is looking to provide such a challenge. She did lose a decision to Chookagian two fights ago, but she bounced back with a split decision over Andrea Lee. Her other wins at flyweight since returning to the weight class permanently in 2018 have come against Kalindra Faria and Ariane Lipski.

No details on a venue or location have been revealed as of this writing.