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James Gallagher will return to Bellator bantamweight action in August, the promotion has announced.

Gallagher, 26, will fight American Cris Lencioni in a 135-pound bout at Bellator 298 on August 11 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The scrap headlines the prelim section of the card and will be broadcast live on the BBC iPlayer in the UK and on Virgin Media in Gallagher’s native Ireland.

The bout will represent Gallagher’s first action in the cage since a November 2021 since he was defeated by submission by Patchy Mix in the third round of the Bellator 270 main event from Dublin, Ireland. The defeat set Gallagher’s career record to 11-2. Mix is presently the interim Bellator bantamweight champion and was recently crowned the winner of the promotion’s 135-pound grand prix.

Gallagher was intended to participate in the tournament but was forced to withdraw after sustaining an injury which later required surgery. The Irishman also withdrew from scheduled bouts against both Brett Johns and Leandro Higo.

Lencioni, meanwhile, is 11-3 as a professional and is currently riding a four-fight win streak, including his last two fights in the Bellator cage.

Bellator 289 is set to be headlined by a welterweight fight between Logan Storley and Brennan Ward.