Abdul Rahim Shaikh enhanced his status as Goa's MMA superstar not just as a fighter, but also as a coach when six of his seven students emerged victorious at the Fight Night 2.0 MMA event at 'We For Fatorda' ground here recently.
Vijay Sardessai, president of AIMMAF and Fatorda MLA graced the occasion as the chief guest in support of the sport.
Abdul Rahim, who is the only Goan who currently holds the Brazilian Jiu -Jitsu belt, himself went on to deliver a knockout performance to put the icing on the cake as seven Goans proved their mettle in this brutal event against the opponents drawn from various parts of India.
The 4-time national champion Abdul Rahim was instrumental in bringing the edge-of-the-seat thriller MMA event to Goa, in association with the Nagpur-based Xtreme Akhaada, who looked after the technicalities of the event.
Also featured in the main event of the night in the Bantamweight category, Abdul Rahim attacked his opponent Kapil Gupta (Delhi) with kicks to start with before taking him down and using his grappling skills to good effect. So comfortable in the bout was Abdul Rahim, that he called out to Fatorda MLA Vijai Sardesai, who graced the occasion to boost the local favourite, from the octagonal cage and within seconds jumped over the arena to celebrate his second-round knockout victory with the AIMMAF President seated in the crowd.
Among Rahim's Ultimate Fight Factory trainees - Shoaib Ali, Mushtak Attar, Hritik Sawant, Nikhil Thapa, Sayed Ali Khan and Vishwajeet Patil were excellent with their technique and endurance on the way to their respective victory; thereby announcing Goa's emergence as a MMA force to reckon in future.
Shoaib, whose mother was standing close to the action with her hands folded in prayers while her son looked in a spot of bother initially, was ecstatic after an astonishingly one-sided result of the Featherweight bout. His opponent Shera Kotkeny, also from Goa, had looked equally good to start the bout, but Shoaib turned the encounter on its head. The youngster established a stranglehold with his rear neck-choke forcing Shera into submission in the Round 1 itself.
Sayed Ali Khan, who was the oldest fighter of the event, delivered a sensational result in his first Pro fight in MMA. He literally bulldozed his way to victory over Mussamil Khan of Rajasthan, with the Goan implementing the 'Arm triangle' to triumph in Round 1.
Hritik Sawant was also amongst the Goan winners, who did not require more than Round 1 to seal the victory. In the Bantamweight Category, Hritik looked in control from the start and punished his opponent 17-year-old Ganesh Waskar from Maharashtra with a neck-choke move. Hritik won by submission as Ganesh tapped out.
Sakshi Gajbhiye won by unanimous decision Vs Anushka Bagde (both Maharashtra)
Utpal Changmai (Assam) won by unanimous decision Vs Vishal Metkari (Maharashtra)
Mushtak Attar (Goa) won by submission Vs Yuvraj Kadam (Maharashtra)
Pranav Petkar (Maharashtra) won by split decision Vs Dipesh Pandya (Goa)
Nikhil Thapa (Goa) won by submission Vs Nayan Khandale (Maharashtra)
Vishwajeet Patil (Goa) won by unanimous decision Vs Vijay Yadav (Maharashtra)
Nikhil Bawne won by submission Vs Pratik Patil (both Maharashtra)
Kabir Sakpal (Maharashtra) beat Deelip L.R, Nikhita Singh beat Khushi Gupta
Written by: Mavil Maulingkar