Valley News Desk

Meet Owais Yaqoob: Second best mixed martial art player in India

South Kashmir boy has won 11 gold medals at national, 17 at state level

Jahangeer Ganaie

Pulwama, Mar 03 (KNO): After winning numerous medals at the state and national level, a youth from South Kashmir was recently declared as the second-best mixed martial art player in the country by All India Mixed Martial Art Federation (AIMMAF).

Owais Yaqoob, 22, a resident of Murran village of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district has so far won 11 gold medals at a national level, six silver medals at the national level besides 17 gold medals at the state level in different forms of martial art.

Owais while talking to news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) said that he was passionate about martial art since childhood and from 2013 he started taking part in competitions.

In year 2013, in a very first competition, Owais managed to bag gold medal, on basis of which he got opportunity to represent J&K at national level where he brought laurels by winning dozens of medals.

“After playing at national level at various places, I joined mixed martial arts camping with different coaches in different states of India,” he said, adding that, after attending camps, he started taking parts in mixed martial arts fights.

“So far I have won 11 gold medals at national level, six silver medals and 17 gold medals at state level and officials at All India Mixed Martial Art Federation declared me as the second best mixed martial art player of India,” he said.

Besides medals, based on my performance, I have received titles like ‘Best Fighter Boy’ in 28 states besides ‘Champion of Champions’ in 2018 in Jammu and Kashmir, he said.

Owais says since 2015 he has taught over 200 youth the different forms of martial arts and among them many have represented J&K at the national level and even won gold medals.

Owais said that to stay away from drug and anti-social activities, there is a need to get involved in sports and martial arts and in order to teach the youth of Pulwama district and keep them away from drugs, he has come with academy namely Lion’s Den.

He said that youth of J&K aren’t so much interested in martial arts like he saw outside J&K due to lack of infrastructure, however, new centres are coming up and new forms of martial arts like Juijitsu are being taught at these centres.

Owais claims that Juijitsu and other forms of martial art are only being taught at his centre and people interested in martial arts must work hard and show consistency and one day they will be champions—(KNO)

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