QUICK COMBO: AROUND ASIA

Judo in Mongolia, UFC in China, and MMA takes big steps in Pakistan and Vietnam

The ever-developing game of MMA has seen an increasing proclivity for wrestling skills.  Add Ronda Rousey into the mix, and the upcoming Summer Olympics in London, means it’s now time to pay attention to another valuable combat art – Judo.  Check out this video montage and interview with Khashbaatar Tsagaanbaatar, one of Mongolia‘s premier judokas.  He was the only Mongolian to medal in the 2004 Games, winning a bronze.

Dana White’s hot topic has been China recently.  He talked briefly to Heavy.com about UFC China and responded to a question about the event being aired on Fuel.  He said it’s because Fuel is a network that’s airing UFC almost 24/7.  Dana’s stated that he wants Cung Le to meet Rich Franklin on the Fuel 6 event, providing that Cung recovers from a bone bruise swiftly.  Here’s a coffee cup found in UFC Headquarters.

When you think of Pakistan, MMA is probably not the first thing that comes to mind.  One man is almost single-handedly trying to change that.  He is Bashir Ahmad of PakMMA.  He’s intellectual, soft-spoken; he sets up events and then fights in them; he develops the gym and his students daily while dealing with rolling black-outs in 40C temperatures; and he’s just signed with ONE FC.  On top of that all, he’s got a crack film crew behind him, putting out some very slick promos like this latest spot.

Cung who?  In Vietnam, there’s another lonely guy pounding away at getting the MMA scene going.  After seven years as a doctor, he traded in his latex gloves for a pair of 4-ouncers.  Long Nguyen of VietFighter is growing the sport from the base up, and doing it by getting involved in every aspect. Last year saw him compete at the Thailand Open BJJ tournament where he medaled in both gi and no gi.  This year he’s bringing along the first ever female Vietnamese BJJ team.  The same goes for his MMA intentions.  Long, a blue belt, jumped in with both feet when he took an MMA fight in Malaysia’s UB 9 against black belt Leke Machado.  He staved off and reversed the black belt but was submitted.  And had nothing but positive reactions afterwards and enthusiasm to keep marching forward.