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Merab Dvalishvili will get the matchup he was hoping for.
Dvalishvili (13-4 MMA, 6-2 UFC) is targeted to meet former title challenger Marlon Moraes at UFC 266 on Sept. 25. A venue and location have not yet been announced for this card.
MMA Junkie confirmed the booking with a person with knowledge of the matchup after it was announced by Dvalishvili’s coach Ray Longo on the Anik Florian Podcast.
Following his win over Cody Stamann in May, Dvalishvili mentioned that the UFC was looking to match him up with Moraes, an idea that got him excited. The Georgian fighter has won his past six in a row and will look to enter the upper echelon of the division when he takes on a former title challenger.
Moraes (23-8-1 MMA, 5-4 UFC) is currently enduring the roughest stretch of his career having lost three of his past four. After rebounding from his bantamweight title loss to Henry Cejudo with a win over former featherweight king Jose Aldo at UFC 245, Moraes has dropped two straight stoppage losses to Cory Sandhagen, and most recently Rob Font at UFC Fight Night 183 in December.
With the addition, the UFC 266 lineup now includes:
Champ Jan Blachowicz vs. Glover Teixeira – for light heavyweight title
Manon Fiorot vs. Mayra Bueno Silva
Uros Medic vs. Jalin Turner
Jessica Andrade vs. Cynthia Calvillo
Merab Dvalishvili vs. Marlon Moraes