Fighting out of Lahore, Pakistan, Irfan Ahmed, 23, will be making his professional Mixed Martial Arts debut at Rich Franklin’s ONE Warrior Series in Singapore on June 20th for a chance to win a $100,000 contract with ONE Championship.
ONE Warrior Series is a show hosted by former world Champion Rich Franklin as he travels Asia and Australia looking for upcoming talent in the sport of Mixed Martial Arts.
Irfan will be the only Pakistani on the card in a show which has seen three Pakistani’s formerly make their debut, including women’s MMA pioneer Anita Karim, who achieved a victory on Feb 28th at ONE Warrior Series 4. Irfan will be facing Nepali National Kickboxing Champion Sandeep Gurung in the strawweight division.
Sandeep Gurung is a veteran of ONE Warrior Series where he took on Akihiro Fujisawa who later went on to win the coveted $100,000 contract. Meanwhile, Irfan is undefeated in national events and has represented Pakistan in the Amateur World Championships in Bahrain.
Furthermore, Irfan is not only an athlete but the captain of “Team Shaheen”, a team founded by Bashir Ahmad, known as the “Godfather of Pakistani MMA”.
Shaheen Academy, where the team is based, is a non-profit facility with a focus on developing youth by sponsoring education and providing after-school tuition alongside martial arts training.
About the fight and chance to fight, Irfan had the following to say, “I am thankful to ONE Warrior Series, especially to Rich Franklin and Bashir Ahmad, for this opportunity and InshaAllah, I will not disappoint my country.”
In additional Irfan praised his teammates from Shaheen Academy and Rogue Fitness Lahore.
The athlete further added that all this would not be possible without his sponsors, coaches, and teammates who are taking care of him as athletes and he will not disappoint his team.
“I respect my opponent and I have seen his last fight,” Irfan said about Sandeep.
“I am going to Knock him out in the very first round. It’s my first professional fight on international stage and I am super excited for this,”