There's plenty to look forward to in the Capital
Boxing promotional company Probellum returns to Dubai for a two-night event featuring world title fights on both cards and a host of elite-level fighters from across the globe.
Probellum Evolution takes place at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium on March 18 and 19, where fight fans in attendance will be able to watch the likes of Sunny Edwards, Regis Prograis, Muhammad Waseem, Tyrone McKenna, Bakhodir Jalolov and Estelle Mossely in action.
With hot prospects such as Bakhodir Jalolov, an Olympic gold medalist, Shabaz Masoud and Peter McGrail also competing, along with two talented Emirati fighters - Sultan Al Nuaimi and Fahad Al Bloushi – it promises to be a huge occasion in terms of the evolution of boxing in the UAE.
Richard Schaefer, President of Probellum, has been giving his thoughts ahead of the event.
What can the fight fans expect from the Probellum shows in Dubai next week?
Fireworks, excitement and really meaningful fights. Fans will have the opportunity to get the one-two punch from Dubai on March 18th and 19th, with back-to-back shows at extremely attractive pricing.
We really want Dubai to become the fight capital of the world and that starts with putting together a mix of fights which are attractive to the local fight fans and the international public as well.
Why did Probellum select Dubai as the destination to host its first shows of 2022?
We really like Dubai. It is a very safe and clean environment. It’s one of the leading tourist destinations in the world, with an amazing infrastructure.
It has the best hotels, the best restaurants, and so the best of the best equals Dubai. Probellum believe that we are the ‘best of’ as well, so it’s the perfect fit.
Probellum is starting 2022 by staging two shows on consecutive nights in Dubai — what was the thinking behind doing so?
Initially we announced one show, but then we quickly saw the demand for that event and we decided that since we are already going to have our team in Dubai, why not add a second show?
As I call it, it's the one-two punch in the desert. Back-to-back shows like this is unprecedented. On 18th you have a world title fight between IBO world lightweight champion Estelle Mossely and Yanina del Carmen Lescano. It is the Middle East’s first-ever female world title fight, a historic moment and the kind of event that you want to be part of, where you can say: ‘You know what? When that happened, I was there and I saw it.'
To be able to watch Estelle Mossely, who is one of the most gifted athletes irrespective of sport, is really a special treat. I've known Estelle going back to her gold medal days in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro and her skill level, in female boxing, is second to none.
She reminds me a little bit of a female version of Floyd Mayweather where the skills are just at a different level. As they say in boxing “skills pay the bills” and Estelle is certainly going to be able to pay her bills!
And what about the Irish fighters?
Because it’s St. Patrick's Day weekend, on both cards there will be a heavy, heavy twist towards featuring some of the best fighters from Ireland. We have Jono Carroll and Rohan Date in action on the Friday, followed by Tyrone McKenna and TJ Doheny on the Saturday.
Over the course of the two cards there will be a total of 20 fights and it’s going to be a great event.
Tell about the second night of the event?
The card on the Saturday is led by a world championship fight as the super charismatic Sunny Edwards takes on a legend in his native Pakistan, Muhammad Waseem. This is a fascinating showdown stylistically as well. I’m very, very excited to see that.
Another fight on this card - Tyrone McKenna versus Regis Prograis – could be a main event anywhere. It's the co-main event here and a final eliminator in the 140lbs weight class. McKenna versus Prograis equals high stakes. The winner will be fighting for a world title.
I've promoted around 500 world championship fights all over the world and Regis Prograis is one of the most charismatic fighters I have worked with. He has that charisma. He has that attitude. His ring walks are legendary. His performance in the ring is legendary and must-see as well. He is, in my opinion, clearly one of the top 10 pound for pound fighters in the world today.
How happy were you with how Probellum's maiden show in December, in Dubai, went?
It was a fantastic set up. I think it was the most luxurious boxing environment that ever existed at any fight. And that again ties in with what Dubai and Probellum stand for – first class.
You could feel the excitement come through the screens because those fight fans who were there, they were excited. They were loud, they were cheering their fighters on and it was just a great night of boxing.
Dubai boxing would not be where it is today, quickly becoming one of the leading destinations for world class boxing, without Ahmed Seddiqi. He is part of our board at Probellum and he is really the pioneer and the trailblazer of boxing in Dubai. And we are very fortunate to have him as our board member, as our advisor and our confidant, and that we have an opportunity to work with him on these events because nobody knows the market better than him. If you want to do first class, big-time boxing, he is the man and we are very fortunate that he is part of our team. So I want to thank him as well.
Tickets for Probellum Evolution are available now via Platinum List.
There's plenty to look forward to in the Capital
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