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Cheick Kongo vs. Javy Ayala announced for Bellator 199

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Bellator 172 photos
Cheick Kongo
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Cheick Kongo is back in the Bellator cage this spring.

Officials announced Thursday that Kongo will fight Javy Ayala (10-6) in a heavyweight bout at Bellator 199 on May 12 at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. Kongo and Ayala were both previously named as alternates for the Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix tournament.

The bout was first reported by MMAjunkie.

Kongo, 42, has won his last five bouts — all by decision — and seven of his last eight. He is 9-2 in the Bellator cage and 27-10-2 as a professional dating back to 2001. In his last outing at Bellator 179 in May of last year, he took a split nod over Augusto Sakai in London.

Ayala will be aiming to bounce back from a unanimous decision loss to Roy Nelson at Bellator 183 this past September. Prior to that, Ayala had won two straight including a 16-second knockout of veteran Sergei Kharitonov. His Bellator record sits at 5-3.

Bellator 199 will be headlined by a Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix first-round matchup between light heavyweight titleholder Ryan Bader and Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal. Also announced, former UFC and World Series of Fighting welterweight standout Jon Fitch makes his Bellator debut against Paul Daley.