Earlier today we reported that Diego Sanchez had been forced to pull out of this month’s UFC 135 co-main event fight with Matt Hughes due to a broken hand, and it seems the UFC have already targeted his replacement.

According to former No.1 welterweight contender Josh Koscheck he’s the man the promotion now want Hughes to face.

“:) got a fight in 21 days bitches……..” Koscheck wrote on Twitter not long after the news about Sanchez broke.

“Oh ya 19 days then or something like that!!!! Either way it looks like I am in to fight matt Hugh if he takes it????

So it’s all down to Hughes now to accept the fight – and under the circumstances it’s hard to see the veteran campaigner doing anything other than agreeing to this challenge.

There’s no doubt this is a tough bout for the 37 year-old though, especially as in recent years he’s struggled to make his mark against the division’s other leading lights such as GSP, Thiago Alves and BJ Penn.

On the other hand there’s perhaps never going to be a better time to face Koscheck than now considering that he’s just spent the past 9 months on the sidelines thanks to an orbital fracture sustained during his unsuccessful title challenge against St.Pierre at UFC 124.

It’s been a long road back to full recovery for Koscheck and even as recently as the past few weeks he had been floating the idea of taking a fight at 185lbs to tide him over while he worked his way back down to fighting shape at 170lbs, and had targeted November as his return date.

Now he has less than three weeks to get back down to welterweight in fighting shape ready to take on a former champion.

So it’s an intriguing fight, and one that may even attract more attention than the originally scheduled bout, making it a very good bit of matchmaking by the UFC under the circumstances.