In quite the surprising comeback, former UFC bantamweight champion, Miesha Tate is slated to snap an almost five-year stay away from professional mixed martial arts — as she makes an Octagon return on July 17 — clashing with the retiring, Marion Reneau.

The 34-year-old last competed professionally at UFC 205 from Madison Square Garden in November of 2016, where she announced her retirement from mixed martial arts with immediate effect following a unanimous decision loss to former title chaser, Raquel Pennington.

In the time since spent away from the Octagon, the Xtreme Couture mainstay had relocated to Singapore to work in tandem with Chatri Sityodtong‘s ONE Championship promotion, acting as VP. Tate had previously flirted with the idea of a comeback, although, noted her interest in a grappling matchup against current Bellator featherweight champion, Cris Cyborg rather than a return to MMA.

43-year-old Californian, Reneau is set to make one final professional appearance when she tackles Tate on July 17 — attempting to bring an end to a three-fight skid, and bow out of the sport with a victory. ESPN MMA reporter, Brett Okamoto was first to report the news of the bantamweight clash. 

Washington native Tate ended her time in the UFC off the back of a pair of defeats to the above-mentioned, Pennington, whom she coached on The Ultimate Fighter 18 — after dropping the bantamweight championship to current titleholder, two-weight champion, Amanda Nunes in the main event of UFC 200 in July of 2016.

A twenty-five fight professional veteran, Tate has managed to secure victories over the likes of veteran, Jan Finney, Hitomi Akano, and lifted Strikeforce gold against Dutch standout, Marloes Coenen with a fourth-round arm-triangle. 

Featuring twice against arch-rival, Ronda Rousey under the Strikeforce and UFC banners, the former failed to ever best the latter, but scored notable Octagon wins against the likes of Liz Carmouche, Sara McMann, and Jessica Eye — before securing the undisputed bantamweight title with a rallying, hail-mary effort against Holly Holm at UFC 196 — submitting the then-titleholder with a fifth round rear-naked choke.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, Reneau hopes to bring an end to a four-fight slide when pitted with the returning Tate on July 17 — suffering a recent UFC Vegas 22 unanimous decision loss to Macy Chiasson just last weekend.

With a professional record of 9-7, the elven-year professional veteran has managed to lodge three knockout wins and a further seven submission successes, stopping the likes of former strawweight pacesetter, Jessica Andrade, Milana Dudieva, Talita Bernando, and submitted fellow-foe, McMann back in February 2018 — her most recent win. 

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.