More expected for MIMMA tryouts in Sarawak
THE CROWD WAS GRIPPED with excitement as they watched local martial arts fighters duking it out during the tryouts for the third season of The Malaysian Invasion Mixed Martial Arts (MIMMA) organised by Tune Talk at Plaza Merdeka on March 28th.
According to Tune Talk head of communication Fara Hassan, this year was the second time the MIMMA tryouts were being held in Kuching and the number of participants was expected to increase to about 150 fighters during the two-day event from March 28-29 compared to 75 last year.
“Compared to last year, this year we are expecting more locals to join since this is the second time we are holding tryouts in Sarawak,” said Fara.
“Those who signed up will get weighed in and made sure they are medically clear and fit for tryouts,” said head coach, Matt Pellino.
According to Pellino, fighters who signed up for the tryouts would undergo a sparring session where they would be judged on their grappling and striking skills and techniques before proceeding.
“You can’t just be good in striking or jujitsu, you have to be able to compete in every realm of mixed martial arts. So, that is what the sparring session is for,” he added.
After the tryouts, the organiser will then shortlist the fighters down to 16 hopefuls from the seven weight classes. The MIMMA Grand Finals will be held in Stadium Putra in Kuala Lumpur.
Besides Sarawak, MIMMA Season 3 tryouts have been held in Johor and be moving on to Penang, Sabah and Selangor after the Sarawak leg.
This year’s MIMMA is introducing the female catchweight division (above 48 kg to below 56.7 kg) and the foreign pride catchweight division (above 61.2 kg to below 70.3 kg).
“We also added a women’s division for local women and a foreign division for the first time in MIMMA. So, the foreign division is open to any foreigners,” said Matt.
“Personally, I think that the people in Kuching and Sarawak in general are mentally and physically tougher, they have more heart and it is easy to build them from the ground up. There are those from Kuching who can easily compete for a championship,” he said.
Also present during the tryouts was Ramliee Ahmad, a representative for Majlis Sukan Negeri Sarawak.