Malaysian Invasion MMA (MIMMA) Season 3 kicked off in Johor Bahru on March 21-22, 2015. Over 250 amateur MMA hopefuls turned up at the first of the nation-wide tryouts.
The original and defending MIMMA Middleweight Champ Jing Yi Chong hails from the region, and Tune Talk’s promotion of him has made him almost a celebrity. Not bad for an amateur fighter. Additionally, Malaysia’s oldest-running MMA promotion Ultimate Beatdown takes place in Johor Bahru, so it was an area primed and ready for MIMMA’s third season launch.
Sponsored and organized by Tune Talk, CEO Jason Lo stated the importance of starting Season 3 in Johor Bahru,
“The MMA scene in Malaysia has bloomed tremendously over the past couple of years with efforts from all quarters including the gyms, the fans and the fighters themselves. Having the first tryouts in Johor Bahru symbolizes a great start to a great journey as we all know that the depth of love for MMA among the community here is very profound.”
Johor Bahru City Square was the venue for the event. MIMMA originally launched in a mall as a risky, unheard-of venture, and the formula has paid off dividends. By holding a caged event in such a place, it has at once demystified and legitimized MMA while bringing the sport to a wide audience who might have never been exposed. Additionally, MIMMA is live-streaming all of the tryouts on their website here.
The tryouts consist of three stages. The first is the Grappling Stage, where competitors are paired up for two minutes to show what they know for the grappling judges. In the second, the Striking Stage, 90 seconds of pad work is shown to the striking judges. The final Cage Stage consists of two minutes in the MIMMA cage against another contestant, overseen by qualified and experienced referees.
For the new Women’s MMA division added, about 14 females showed up for the tryouts – something no one in Malaysia could have ever imagined just one year ago. Malaysian Women’s rugby player Halina Zaini was one of them. Malaysia’s Ann Osman has been heavily promoted by ONE FC and this has done a tremendous amount for women in the sport in the country. The foreign fighter’s division also garnered a few contestants as well, and many more are already said to be registered for the four remaining tryouts.
Among the Season 3 contestants there are a few known fighters returning for another chance at gold. Among them are Season 1 semifinalist Teh Kah Wei, Season 2 quarterfinalist Dhiaaul Amal, and Mohd Ridzuan also from Season 2.
CEO Lo commented upon returning contestants and those who are already well aware of MIMMA from a spectator stand point and who are now ready to try out,
“We are excited to start season 3 as amateur fighters who will be going for the tryouts will more knowledgeable and well-trained. They should already know what to expect because I am sure they have been taking points from the previous 2 seasons. The amateur scene is healthy now. It is the most electrifying season, so let’s get the ball rolling!”
The next MIMMA Season 3 tryouts will be held in Sarawak (Sara WHACK!) on March 28th through 29th. Following that, in Penang on April 4 and 5, Sabah on April 11 and 12, and Selangor on April 18 and 19. People who wish to try out can register online at http://www.malaysianinvasion.com/joining-mimma, however MIMMA will take on-the-day registrants.