CAPE TOWN – It certainly has been an exciting time for South African and African MMA in 2018.
From South Africa’s former EFC champion Don Madge making an explosive and victorious debut against Te Edwards in the UFC (the biggest MMA promotion in the world) to Bahrain’s Brave Combat Federation landing on South African shores for the first time to host Brave 19 at Sun City on December 8.
And “it’s the best feeling right now” for Zimbabwe’s Sylvester Chipfumbu.
Sylvester, who fights in the Extreme Fighting Organisation, will take on Finland’s former IMMAF (International Mixed Martial Arts Federation) World and European Open Championships gold medallist Abdul Hussein in a flyweight bout.
Fighting out of the Ultimate MMA Fitness gym in Johannesburg, Chipfumbu is not too concerned about the man in front of him.
“Nothing but respect for Abdul, but right now, I’m not too worried about him. I’ll let him do the worrying because he’s coming into the jungle.
“Fighting for the first time outside the Extreme Fighting Promotion feels different in a way of new opportunities, more exposure, etc, other than that, it’s just another day in the office, get the win and move on,” says Chipfumbu.
Hussein, born in Lebanon before moving to Finland during his childhood years, has a decent all-round game with two TKOs and two submissions to compliment his 4-1 record thus far.
It would be interesting to see how he deals with Chipfumbu’s (5-1) long reach, aggressive approach, and powerful striking.
Chipfumbu could do well to keep his opponent at bay, especially with his lethal karate background, but he has shown that he is constantly growing in the close-quarter battles, too.
The Zimbabwean says he is not too focused on the distant future right now, but “the immediate goals are to win my next fight and the one after and so on, then get some straps around my waist, start an academy back home (in Zimbabwe)”.
Brave CF19 will feature 10 exciting bouts that will include nine representatives from South Africa on the card.
“South Africa is one of MMA’s biggest markets and home to great talents that have fought for Brave before, so going there is a no-brainer.
“We worked hard on this project and we have been able to secure a very good broadcasting deal locally, with the help of a very capable team,” says Brave president Mohammed Shahid.
It’s the second time the organisation will travel to Africa after a successful debut back in August, when Brave landed in Morocco.
The main event will mark the promotional debut of Adam Townsend, one of Brave’s marquee signings in 2018.
The American welterweight, who comes in with a record of 19 wins and five losses, takes on a tough challenge against South Africa’s own Mark Hulme (6-2), another debutant for Brave Combat Federation.
The event has caused much of a stir in terms of logistical issues which has seen plenty fans and followers complain about the fact that event clashes with Africa and South Africa’s home-grown promotion, the Extreme Fighting Championship, that will display its final show of the 2018 calendar on the same night in Menlyn, Pretoria.
Tickets for the fight card can be found at Computicket, with prices ranging from R245 (upper retracts) to R1 500 (ringside AA).
Full Brave 19 fight card
Welterweight: Adam Townsend v Mark Hulme
Bantamweight: Frans Mlambo v Arnold Quero
Welterweight: David Bear v Pawel Kielek
Welterweight: Dino Bagattin v Carl Booth
Middleweight: Dimitri Fogg v Carlos Graca
Featherweight: Cedric Doyle v Gareth Buirski
Flyweight: Abdul Hussein v Sylvester Chipfumbu
Featherweight: Nkosi Ndebe v Ahmed Faress
Lightweight: Hanru Botha v Alex Martinez
Amateur Lightweight: Francois Meyer v Jan Paul Ronge@juliankiewietz