Hyderabad: The 11-member team of mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters from Telangana, led by team coach Mohd. Faqruddin is all set to represent and participate in the fourth National MMA Championship being held at Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, from February 19 to 21.
The team is also being accompanied by four members who are part of the event’s organizing team, said Shaikh Khalid, coach of India’s national team. He is also the founder of the Telangana Association of mixed Martial Arts(TAMMA).
“Despite the national lockdown and many obstacles, the team is ready for this year’s nationals. The fighters have been training relentlessly day and night and the energy is through the roof” Shaikh Khalid told siasat.com.
India’s first amateur International champion Mahboob Khan, who is from Hyderabad, said “This year will be the year entire India will know-how skilled and passionate Hyderabadi fighters are. We will dominate all weight divisions InshaAllah (if God wills).”
He further added that his team is being careful about maintaining weights of players this time because of an incident that transpired previously, wherein he was disquailified at an international tournament. “My weight slightly exceded the category. I blame our Hyderabadi food for that,” he said in jest.
The main fighters representing the Telangana team are Arbaaz Ahmed at bantamweight, Hemanth Naik at middle-weight, Abdul Aziz at strawweight, Areeb at featherweight, Sana Afreen at Featherweight, Divya at middleweight, Praneeth at lightweight, Varun at strawweight, Mahboob Khan at featherweight and Suhas at feather weight.