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‘Irish’ Joe Duffy is set to make his UFC return in London on March 16 in what will be his first bout since a November 2017 loss to James Vick inside Madison Square Garden at UFC 217.

Duffy, the Donegal man who trains under Firas Zahabi at Tri-Star in Canada, will face England’s Marc Diakese on the March 16 card in London it has been confirmed by the promotion. 30-year-old Duffy’s 16-month absence was in part due to a rib injury suffered in training which ruled him out of a scheduled contest with Ross Pearson in Australia last year but has now been cleared to resume his fight career.

In Diakese, he will face a fighter with his back very much against the wall. The Englishman of Conoglese descent exploded on the UFC scene with three successive wins but has since dropped three fights on the bounce and will face a stern challenge in the Irishman, who is considered by many to be among the best boxers in the UFC’s 155-pound fold.

UFC London is scheduled to be headlined by a welterweight main event between Darren Till and Jorge Masvidal, with Gunnar Nelson and Leon Edwards battling in the co-main event.