In the UK a TV show called Last Man Standing sent a group of men with varying specialties to different countries around the world to compete in the indigenous and often unique sports and competitions such as Suri stick fighting in Ethiopia, Water Buffalo racing in Sumbawa and Kushti mud wresting in India. According to the show this folk style of wrestling is a big draw in India and Karl Gotch even went on a tour of India to learn the art for himself from which he borrowed a number of techniques which make up what we now know as catch wrestling. So there’s some pretty sweet new information for you to impress your friends with.
While maybe not the first (or tenth) country you would associate with martial arts, the country has a rich combat art tradition and Raj Kundra, the owner of a cricket team named Rajasthan Royals who currently play in the Indian Premier League and husband to Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty has decided to exploit both of these by teaming up with Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt to start India’s first ever MMA promotion, Super Fight League. Also involved with SFL is former MMA manager Ken Pavia who takes on the role of CEO which signals their intention to eventually be known worldwide but let’s be honest here, with a potential audience of around one billion people, they could put on 500 Indian events in a 20,000 capacity arena and never have the same audience twice.
SFL will make its début at the Andheri Sports Complex in Mumbai on March 11th and will see 6 Indian mixed martial artists take on international competition on a card headlined by a bout between James Thompson and Bob Sapp. Judging by the fighter profiles on their website, former UFC fighter Xavier Foupa-Pokam is also expected to feature at some point in the promotion. Information on how to watch the event will hopefully be released shortly. I’ll be honest, I have no idea what is being said in the press conference held to launch Super Fight League but nonetheless you can check it out below. If you can translate then let me know.