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19-11-23 - Zain and Shak bring back the ICO British and WRSA World Titles to the USKA Gym!

19-11-23 - Zain and Shak bring back the ICO British and WRSA World Titles to the USKA Gym!

We had two Unbeaten fighters feature this evening on the TMA Fight Series, Return Of The Champions Super Sunday 2 Event at the Hanger in Wolverhampton.
The Super Show featured some fantastic fighters in some awesome 50/50 match ups that had the capacity crowd excited for what they were about to witness.

For USKA we had two title fights featuring 12 Year Old Zain 'The Hammer' Amer challenging for the ICO -40kg British Title over five rounds against the experienced and capable 13 Year Old Max Farrell from the Rugby School of Kickboxing and Fitness and then in the Co-Main event of the evening we had ICO Lightweight World Champion Shakeel 'Showtime' Hussain attempt to Unify his World Title challenging for the WRSA Lightweight Version of the Belt against Spain's experienced and hard hitting Joel García Jiménez.

Unbeknown to anyone the boys had had a pretty disrupted last few weeks of training camp battling injuries and illness but did not want to let the opportunities slip through their hands so kept things quiet in order for their opponents not to gain any phycological advantage from them.
The biggest set back came two weeks before the event when Chief trainer Qasim Beg was hospitalised with a serious medical condition meaning he himself had to pull out of his comeback fight on the card but also had to suspend final preparations with Zain and Shak.
The USKA Gym rallied with USKA Chief Instructor Neil Kelly stepping in for finishing touches to camp and the boys were good to go come fight night.

Opening up the card as the only Junior Fight on the Bill we had Zain Vs Max for the British Title.
Zain prior to his contest had remained unbeaten in 26 contests winning Area, English, 5 Nations and International Belts and was looking forward to the prospect of adding the British Title to his collection before hopefully setting his sights on European and World Titles next year.
Max jumped at the opportunity of challenging for the British Title when Zain's original opponent Oscar Milovsorov pulled out last week and was very confident of pulling off the upset with him having an aggressive fighting style and a strong skill set.

Zain 'The Hammer' Amer (USKA) Vs Max Farrell (Rugby School of Kickboxing and Fitness)
ICO -40kg British Title - 5 X 2 Minute Rounds - Kickboxing Rules.

Zain right from the first round established range and controlled the distance from the outside with great variety of technique.
Max seemed to be struggling with the speed of Zain in particular with his kicks and was incurring warnings from the referee for holding the Zain's leg once the kick had landed.
By the second round Zain was in full flow and Max was deducted a point again for holding Zain's leg.
Max rallied strongly in the third pressing Zain trying to turn it into a dog fight but Zain's skill was keeping him ahead in the fight.
In the fourth Zain went through the gears and after a heavy combination of techniques referee Garth Porter stepped in and administered an eight count to Max.
In the fifth round and now in full control of the contest Zain continued to tighten the screws and after trapping Max in his own corner he executed a perfect jump turning side kick to the face that dropped Max to the canvas.
Referee Garth Porter had seen enough and waved off the contest leaving Zain the winner by 5th round referee's stoppage and proud recipient of the ICO British Title Belt. 

So a great win from Zain who once again shows his level against a very good opponent indeed in Max Farrell.
Zain is showing the prospect of being one of the Sports future big names and this win earns him the right next year to look forward to another step up in class for European Titles. 

Next up in the penultimate fight of the night and Co-Main event of the evening we had Shakeel Vs Joel for the World Title.
Shak not only was challenging for the World Title here but was attempting to create history to be the only fighter to our knowledge ever to challenge for a World Title, Win it, Defend that World Title and then Unify, Challenging for another version of the World Title in the space of 28 days (4 weeks). 
With the mantra of 'Be Phenomenal or Be Forgotten' Shak was definitely aiming to go big but was taking a massive risk putting his unbeaten record on the line against such a big hitter in Jiménez.
Jiménez had studied the Englishman in all his previous fights and was not only confident of pulling off the win but also doing it by way of Knockout early.

Shakeel 'Showtime' Hussain (USKA) Vs Joel García Jiménez (Spain)
WRSA -60kg Lightweight World Title - 5 X 2 Minute Rounds - Kickboxing Rules.

Round 1 seen Shak hold ring center and establish his speed against the strong looking Spaniard. His timing and variety was keeping Jiménez t bay but the Spanish fighter had a robust look about him that signaled danger and was keeping Shak honest.
In round 2 Shak stepped it up working techniques from body to head but even after clean connects Jiménez was firing straight back trying to catch Shak on the counter.
Round 2 ended with two in the bag for Shakeel but Joel very much still in the fight.
A change of pace in round 3 seen Jiménez on the front foot trying to break Shak's rhythm and maybe turn his fortunes around on the score cards. Shak was having to work harder to establish his range and the tactics seemingly paid off for Jiménez winning the round on two of the three judges score cards.
Round 4 had Shak slip back into his rhythm and was landing well to the body and head of the Spaniard. Shak was intercepting Joel's first initial attack to break his momentum and them countering with good combinations of his own. Shakeel was back in the driving seat to take the round.
Round 5 seen another strong start from Jiménez probably sensing he was behind on the score card but Shak also knew this and was negating Joel's efforts well.
The sometime crude attacks from Jiménez were easy to read for Shak and he was happy to stay on the outside and pick up the points trying to stay out of trouble and not concede his lead.
The final bell went and there was no doubt in anyone's mind where the decision was going... A Unanimous points win with score totals of 50/45, 49/46 and 49/46 to Shak as he had his hand lifted in victory and as he was awarded his new WRSA World Lightweight Title Belt.

So in what was a tough fight against another good opponent we witnessed Shakeel Unify the WRSA and ICO Lightweight World Title and firmly establish himself as the number one fighter in the World at the division.
Three World Title Wins against highly regarded French, American and Spanish opposition, all in the space of 28 days.
Shak now takes a well earned rest for the rest of the year before looking at options both home and abroad in the new year.

A big congratulations to both Zain and Shak on their victories and a big thank you to the USKA Corner Team of Qasim Beg, Neil Kelly and Mushy Younis for looking after our boys both in the build up and in the heat of battle on the night.
Also, it would only be right to say a big heartfelt thank you to everyone who purchased a ticket to come and support our guys and cheer them to victory. It really does mean the World.

Finally, a big shout out also to Gavin Burrows and his phenomenal team at the TMA Fight Series and the WRSA and the ICO governing bodies who continue to afford USKA fighters these tremendous opportunities and providing them with stage to show case their skills.