CEO and owner of the ONE Fighting Championship, Victor Cui, met up with some of us Malaysian bloggers for dinner yesterday to personally share with us about himself, MMA (mixed martial arts), the ONE FC and his ambitions in this sport. He believes that Malaysia needs another national sports hero to look up to other than Lee Chong Wei (badminton) and Nicol David (squash), and ONE FC is the platform to get us one soon.
Knowing Malaysians as a Malaysian myself, most of us wouldn’t take anyone seriously until that person’s knocking on the door really hard with an opportunity to bring pride to the nation. So, being a former student of Malaysian fighter Pete “The Pistol” Davis, I couldn’t help myself but to ask, “Earlier we were talking about finding & producing a new hero for the locals, does that mean that Peter Davis may get a title shot if he wins in the coming event?” Although the question might seem premature (’cause he has lesser experience compared to some of the other fighters), I personally think it’s a legit question ’cause if Pete wins against his opponent Leo Krishna tomorrow, it’d be his 5th win in a row, third in the ONE FC.
“Hmm, I don’t know. We’ll see how he does in this fight,” responded Victor after a long pause. “Peter’s a very different kind of fighter. He’s an actor and a model, he has an interesting unorthodox fighting style, he brings like 50 supermodels around to cheer for him in his fights and all (laughs). I like Peter. The problem is that the pool in his division is very deep.” That basically means there are many other fighters in the lightweight division (like Shinya Aoki) that can be considered for the title shot against the current champ, Kotetsu “No Face” Boku. Well then, I guess Pete’s title contention may not be this soon.
So which Malaysian MMA fighter is the closest to a world championship title contention? Victor reminded me that Adam “Shogun” Shahir Kayoom‘s Malaysian too and that he’s great fighter as well. He went quiet after his ONE FC debut in June 2012 because he had to take some time off for his newborn child but he’s back now and ready for second ONE FC event tomorrow. Victor also mentioned the names of other Malaysian fighters like the young prospect Gianni Subba, who has shown a lot of potential, and A.J “Pyro” Lias Mansor, the famous National Silat Champion and the first ever Silat fighter to ever compete in MMA.
The Malaysian fighters mentioned above and many more others will be featured at ONE FC: Return of Warriors that’s happening tomorrow (February 2nd) at Stadium Putra, Kuala Lumpur. If you couldn’t get your hands of the tickets, you can always watch it live online at onefc.com.my. Stay tuned for the post-event recap/review!
Photo credits to CleverMunkey.com and ONE Fighting Championship.