Divided by country, united by sport. It’s often been said that sport goes where politics cannot and that is exactly what happened today at the GAMMA Asian MMA Championship 2021 thanks to a moment of true solidarity and sportsmanship from Mixed Martial Arts Pakistan (PAK MMA).
With athletes competing simultaneously in different rings, Team India found itself struggling to provide proper support after Indian coach Vishal Seigell had to leave the arena due to illness. Coaches from PAK MMA graciously stepped in and stood in the corner of Indian athlete Shammas Latheef.
Latheef went on to dominate the bout against his Indonesian opponent, securing victory in the first round.
It was a magical moment between India and Pakistan that transcended the decades of political tension, border disputes and wars, harkening back to a time before the partition of the two countries.
GAMMA prides itself on being a united family, and today’s show of friendship and respect is yet another example of sport’s unique power to bring out the best in people.
All India MMA Federation (AIMMAF) President Aditya Ps thanked the entire Pakistan delegation for their exemplary sportsmanship and wished them luck going forward in the tournament. He added that AIMMAF would return the favour should Pakistan MMAF ever need it.
GAMMA applauds the actions of both teams, which exemplified the phrase: divided by country, united by sport!