Emirati champion Al Bloushi praises Al Seddiqi's passion to grow Arab boxing in the UAE

The Super-Flyweight says Rising Stars Arabia encourages athletes to dream and will also bring a lot of exposure to the region

By Leslie Wilson Jr.

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Promoter Ahmed Seddiqi and athletes at the press conference on Friday. - Supplied photo
Promoter Ahmed Seddiqi and athletes at the press conference on Friday. - Supplied photo

Published: Fri 12 Jan 2024, 10:25 PM

UAE’s national champion Fahad Al-Bloushi has saluted Emirati boxing promoter Ahmed Seddiqi ahead of his return to the ring in Saturday’s blockbuster ‘Rising Stars Arabia: The Revolution at Yas Links in Abu Dhabi.

Al-Bloushi (12-1, 2 KOs), who will take on Venezuela’s Milner Mercano (24-12, 20 KOs) in the co-main event. Which features some of the region’s leading and emerging Arab boxers.

This premier fighting series is presented by AAM Seddiqi Sports and supported by the Department of Culture and Tourism of Abu Dhabi.

In the headline bout, Morocco’s No 14 ranked WBC flyweight contender Moussa Gholam (20-1, 12 KOs) squares off against dangerous 'Baby' Lunga Sitemela (15-1, 9 KOs) from South Africa.

“I’m very happy to fight here in an Arab country like the UAE — I want to give my best this Saturday,” Gholam said in Arab News.

Al-Bloushi, nicknamed Kid Emirati in the boxing world, has lost just once in 13 pro fights when he was beaten by Georgia’s Giorgi Gotchoshvili in his second pro appearance.

“Seddiqi Sports is a pioneer because they’re doing boxing events that help promote Arab fighters,” said Al-Bloushi.

“I think that’s really great because I’ve seen a lot of great talents within the Arab region. A lot of Arab fighters do have great talent but lack the support and recognition.

“This platform, I believe, is an amazing opportunity that can nurture and encourage Arab fighters to go ahead and achieve their dreams,” he added.

Al-Bloushi, who beat India’s Amey Nitin in his last fight in July, stressed the importance of the Rising Stars Arabia series created by AAM Seddiqi Sports.

“This is a really big platform, a big show. Also, being streamed on DAZN, I feel like it could really bring a lot of exposure within the region,” he said.

“So I’m really happy to be a part of and really blessed to be a part of the show. I feel like I’ll showcase a lot of talent and hopefully showcase what the Arab world can do.”

Seddiqi, whose passion for boxing grew when he was watching 2005’s epic showdown between Diego Corrales and Jose Luis Castillo in Las Vegas and also named his Dubai boxing gym round 10 in honour of the two warriors commented: “The main point behind Rising Stars Arabia is to have a solid platform for the Arab boxers throughout the Middle East and North Africa.

"They haven’t been given opportunities on the big scale of boxing and this is the roadmap for them to reach that level in global boxing.”.

The series will feature also another Emirati boxer, Fahad Al Khouri, who will face the Pakistan's Shahrzad Suhail, in the middleweight.

In other bouts Iraq's Ameer Kadhum Ghaneemwill face Mexican, Beverly Gonzales, while Syria's Mohammad Baqdashtakes on Tanzania's, Sha’ban Kongo, in the heavyweight division.

Promoter Ahmed Seddiqi, welcomed the emerging boxers who will participate in the series, and wished them the best of luck.

“2024 will be a significant year for Rising Stars Arabia," said Siddiqi. "It’s the second edition of the series and we are thrilled to have world-class boxer Moussa Gholam perform globally on DAZN and ESPN KO.

"We’re also excited about other exceptional talents such as UAE national Fahad Ali Baloushi, whom we staunchly support, to upgrade the Emirati and Arab boxing”, Seddiqi added

“The event aims to provide the rising Arab boxers with an access to the realm of professional boxing through conducting thrilling fights against strong competitors.

"We are fully confident that the series will be presented in the proper manner and will achieve its goals, amidst this congregation of the young boxers”, he said.

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“My hope is for Moroccans to come support their fighter, Emiratis to back their warrior, and all other Arab nationals on the card to have their supporters and fanbase present live on January 13th at Yas Links Abu Dhabi.

"None of this would have been possible without our partners from the Department of Culture and Tourism of Abu Dhabi and our broadcasting partners, DAZN and ESPN KO,” Seddiqi concluded.


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