Muhammad Mokaev: England’s Hope For A Change In Perception
By James Lee
As Muhammad Mokaev has signed his first professional contract with Brave CF, it is only fitting to detail just how assertive and exceptional of an athlete he is and can become.
Whether that be his domination over the regional flyweight circuit to becoming an eventual multiple-time world champion and being named the world’s number one amateur, there is undoubtedly a lot to celebrate about his amateur career and a lot to look forward to for his career going forward.
One moment worth reminiscing on came on his amateur debut at the age of fifteen. Mokaev opened the entire event at the Liverpool Olympia against Jake Hinton from Team Mayhem MMA in Colwyn Bay.
A particular moment that stands out when recollecting on the contest is when he picked up his opponent over his head and in an amateur version of Matt Hughes versus Frank Trigg, walked across the cage before throwing his counterpart down. It was not amateur-like in skill, however. His performance stood out as being one of best on the card, despite being his debut and those with more experience following.
Everything he did that night stood out as not only significantly ahead of his opponent, but of the amateur regional circuit. Takedowns at ease, comfortable striking and most importantly high-level grappling, which saw the ultimate end to the contest. Although the first building block to his eventual global success, a win so flawless on an amateur debut comes few and far between.
Mokaev’s debut promotion is amongst a flood across the country that have helped to build a sustainable, nationwide audience to harness upcoming fight talent. With the North West of England arguably the thriving hub of martial arts, the success of Shinobi FC sets out a guided path for those aspiring to reach the sport’s pinnacle.
Aside from his obvious skill, an element that rightfully propelled and separated Mokaev was his willingness to fight anybody anywhere. Whether that be from his earliest days at flyweight to the international bantamweight world stage, the Aspire fighter found success in every realm against all.
Following contests in Tanko, ICE FC and UKFC cemented his regional status, before his international status was secured through multiple world title victories to conclude his amateur career at 23-0. A record that pristine would be impressive if he had just fought nationally, but the fact he took on the world stage on multiple occasions makes it dramatically more impressive.
Most likely, if his level of success came in boxing, the sporting bodies across England would promote him significantly, and the attention around his switch to professional would be more high-profile. Due to the sport’s decisive nature, Mokaev, unfortunately, has not received that treatment, however, if the nineteen-year-old proves his hype in the professional realm, all anybody can be is supportive.
A fighter who proudly wears the flag of White and Red, despite originating from Dagestan, is somebody who can inspire a combat generation, and maybe just maybe, change the sport’s perception in this region and become one of just a few English mixed martial arts world champions.
Ultimately, the limit is endless for Mokaev, and Brave CF is a more than suitable spot for him currently. To cement himself in a region he is familiar with and where much of his amateur success has been, before venturing on the biggest stage in what will be inevitably his toughest challenge.
All that is years away though currently, but it is the time now that the English fanbase should recognise and support the prospect they have in Muhammad Mokaev.