Five of the Biggest MMA Indian Stars to Keep an Eye On
When people think of sports that are loved in India they will think of cricket and football, and they would be right to do so. However, there is another sport that is having a surge in popularity, and that is Mixed Martial Arts, more commonly known as MMA. Other sports such as Formula 1 and NBA have been trying to get a foothold in India but have no managed, and we feel that the reason for this is that these sports are not as adrenaline filled as MMA. Below we are going to take a look at some of the biggest Indian names in MMA.
Phogat is one of the hottest names in Indian MMA right now and has a huge following. Phogat, who is the daughter of Mahavir Singh Phogat, a wrestling legend, won Gold in wrestling at the Commonwealth Games in 2016. As well as this, she also earned a Silver medal at the U23 World Wrestling Championships as well as three National Championships in India.
She decided that she had enough wrestling, so she turned her attention to MMA, and made her debut in November 2019. Her first fight was against Nam Hee Kim from South Korea and she won in the first round thanks to a TKO. Since then, she has fought three more fights and have won them all. She is certainly one to keep an eye on and has certainly caught the attention of the sports betting markets. Betting on MMA matches is becoming more and more popular around the world, and the presence of an Indian fighter has definitely seen a surge in the amount of interest in MMA betting as can be attested on several Indian gambling sites. If she continues to do well and win all her fights her odds of becoming an undefeated champion look well both for her and her supporters.
Arjan “Singh” Bhullar
Canadian Indian, Bhullar, is rated as one of the world’s most dangerous MMA fighters. His roots go back to Billi Bhullar village, which is in Punjab in the north of India. Although he lives in Canada, he regularly goes back to his village to help out. Just like Phogat, he is a very capable wrestler and has a Gold medal from the Commonwealth Games and participated at the 2012 Olympics in London.
When he called an end to his wrestling career, he shifted his attention to becoming an MMA professional, and he soon made a name for himself in UFC. He joined the ONE Championship in 2019, and later this year, depending on Covid-19 restrictions, he will go up against Brandon Vera for the right to lift the ONE World Title.
Just like Bhullar, Mangat grew up in Canada, but his parents are from India. He decided to get into martial arts as he was bullied at school, and then he decided to turn professional after being inspired by Rich Franklin, an MMA legend. During his 20s, and with little competition experience to his name, Mangat started his journey to becoming one of the best MMA fighters in the world. He spent a bit of time fighting in the regional circuit and won the BFL Featherweight Championship. After this, he joined the ONE Championship in 2019.
In his first two fights for promotion, Mangat beat Toni Tauru, a former ONE World Champion, and Abro Fernandes, a dangerous fighter from Indonesia. He seems to be getting better and better with each fight, and it will not be long before he is seen as one of the best fighters in the division. This is due to the fact that when he fights he puts his heart and soul into every match because he is not fighting for himself, he is fighting for his family and to give them a better life.
Roka mixes brawn and beauty in her 52-kilogram frame. She has been fighting for most of her life, having started with boxing when she was just 11, before turning professional back in 2016. She represented India at several amateur tournaments and was even the National Boxing Champion at one point.
She eventually decided to stop boxing and switch her attention to MMA in 2017. Within two months of entering the MMA circuit, she had already picked up an impressive four first-round finishes in the Super Fight League. She was eventually signed up by ONE Championship, and now fights the best MMA talents the world has to offer. She now has her eyes on the Atomweight World Title and if she can gather a few wins, she might get her chance to fight for her dreams soon enough.
Raju is based in Singapore, but he comes from Kerala in India and he is now one of the best lightweight talents in the ONE Championship. He moved to Singapore in 2011 to further his education, and he trained in a variety of fighting sports before deciding that MMA was the combat sport for him. During his career he has won the Ultimate Satira Championship and got a couple of good wins while competing at the Singapore Fighting Championships.
He has faced some seriously good talent in the cage such as Garry Tonon, Honorio Banario, and Amir Khan. When he is on song, he is a great grappling skills and solid striking, and is a very capable finisher having won 6 of his 7 fights before the final round.
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