It will be March before Ian Machado Garry straps on the UFC’s 4oz gloves once more, Dana White confirmed on Saturday night.
Garry was forced to withdraw from a scheduled fight opposite former Kill Cliff FC training partner Vicente Luque at Saturday night’s UFC 296 card in Las Vegas after he developed pneumonia after being struck down by a recent bout with flu. While some had expected Garry to be fast-tracked into a rescheduled fight against Luque in the coming weeks, UFC CEO confirmed to the media late on Saturday night that the Irishman will have to wait until March for his next opportunity in the cage — and nor will it come against Luque.
White confirmed that Garry will take on Geoff Neal in what is expected to be a main card fight at the UFC 299 event on March 9 in Miami, Florida. The fight comes after Garry and Neal were originally scheduled to fight at UFC 292 in August. However, Neal was forced to withdraw from the fight and was replace by Neil Magny, whom Garry defeated by a comprehensive judges’ decision.
Garry is undefeated in his young career to date, and will seek to improve his UFC record to 7-0 (14-0 overall). Neal, by comparison, is 7-3 in his UFC career (15-5 overall) and was last seen in a losing effort against another unbeaten fighter, Shavkat Rakhmanov, in March. Prior to that defeat, Neal scored successive wins against Luque and Argentinian welterweight Santiago Ponzinibbio.
Meanwhile, in the same announcement Dana White also confirmed that former Bellator standout Michael ‘Venom’ Page will make his UFC debut on the same card against the always entertaining Kevin Holland.
UFC 299 is expected to be headlined by a bantamweight title fight between Sean O’Malley and Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera. It will also feature fights between Gilbert Burns and Jack Della Maddalena, while Petr Yan will fight Yadong Song in a potential fight of the night candidate.