‘I was inspired by action movies, but never thought I’d get this far’ ; Ahmad Mujtaba

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ISLAMABAD: Ahmad ‘Wolverine’ Mujtaba exited international arrivals at Benazir Bhutto International Airport on Sunday morning with his fists up. He had just returned, victorious, from Singapore, after beating 21-year-old Benedict Ang at the ONE Championship Asia’s largest mixed martial arts (MMA) platform for professional fighters. Over three five minute rounds, Mr Mujtaba was the more aggressive of the two fighters. Known for grappling and forcing submission from his opponents, this particular fight was different. This time, his efficient and hard boxing-like punches were mostly what caused the judges to unanimously declare him the winner in all three bouts. After his victory at the Singapore Indoor Stadium last Friday, Mr Mujtaba now has 8-0 wins. Unlike his opponent, who had been preparing for the fight at the ONE Championship, Mr Mujtaba was informed late and only had a month and a half to prepare for the challenge. “I would start practicing at 11am and work until 11 at night, running all the way up to Pir Sohawa,” he said. According to him, Benedict Ang did not have any weaknesses he had trained well at a good club in Singapore. “And I had my strong belief and prayers as an extra weapon to defeat my opponent,” he said. Sporting a beard like the Marvel character Wolverine, the 23 year old said he is living his dream. “A lot of action movies inspired me, but I never thought I’d go this far, becoming a professional fighter,” Mr Mujtaba said. Since he began to learn MMA around six years ago, Mr Mujtaba has held two featherweight championships the first at the Underground Battle in February and then at the World Series of Fighting in July, both in Manila. Two months from now he said he plans to compete in the International Fighting Championships. “If I perform well, I’ll be expecting a call from the Ultimate Fighting Championships; the dream platform for every MMA athlete.”