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Mackenzie Dern vs. Randa Markos targeted for UFC 253

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Mackenzie Dern will take another step up in competition when she squares off with vet Randa Markos at UFC 253.

Dern confirmed her participation on the pay-per-view event, and a person with knowledge of the promotion’s plans identified Markos as the targeted opponent. The fight card is expected to take place on Sept. 19 in Las Vegas, though the location has not been finalized.

Dern is less than two months removed from her third win in the UFC octagon, a first-round submission win over Hannah Cifers that put her back in the win column following her first professional MMA loss, a decision setback against Amanda Ribas.

Markos’ most recent appearance also ended in a decision loss to Ribas when they met in March. Markos has alternated between wins and losses – and a single draw – over six years in the octagon following her turn on The Ultimate Fighter 20.