UAE’s Sultan Al Nuaimi will square off against Sulis Barrera of Indonesia in the opening fight at the Rotunda Rumble 3 in Dubai on Friday.
Amir Naqvi, Sports Editor
The UAE’s rising star, Sultan Al Nuaimi, hopes for another exciting victory when he competes against Sulis Barrera of Indonesia in the opening fight at the historic Rotunda Rumble 3, which is scheduled to take place at Caesars Bluewaters in Dubai on March 6.
The event is presented by D4G Promotions in association with Round 10 Boxing Club and MTK Global, and will be broadcast live on ESPN+ in the US in association with Top Rank and iFL TV worldwide.
Though Barrera, whose professional record consists of total of nine fights, with four wins (0 by KO) and five losses, is considered a tough opponent, Nuaimi is brimming with confidence ahead of the bout.
Competing in his second bout since turning professional, the 26-year-old boxer from Ajman expects to knock out his rival Barrera.
“I am really excited to step back in the ring and share the venue with a lot of skilled fighters and great supportive people,” said the two-time UAE national champion.
“I’ve been training hard and worked on a lot of things I’ve seen that I need to build on. It’s getting better, I feel sharper and I will do my best to have a good fight that everyone’s going to enjoy.”
The journey of Nuaimi from virtual gaming to boxing is an inspiration for upcoming UAE boxers.
Till the age of 22 he used to give a huge amount of time to playing video games.
His close friend, Saeed Bin Khadim, advised him to quit gaming and indulge in something real.
Thanks to his friend’s advice, Nuaimi’s life took a 360-degree turn.
Nuaimi said: “A friend of mine tried to drag me out of my video gaming world to get me to do something real, he made me try boxing and I fell in love with it.
“I kept on training and started to watch Arturo Catti, Floyd Mayweather and Prince Naseem Hamed’s highlights then decided to train harder to be able to compete.”
Hamed, who is commonly known as “Prince” Naseem or ‘Naz’, is a former British professional boxer who competed from 1992 to 2002.
He held multiple featherweight world championships, including the WBO title from 1995 to 2000.
Last year, making his professional debut, Nuaimi silenced Indonesia’s Charles Latuperissa in one minute and 53 seconds at a super-flyweight category of the Rotunda Rumble 2.
“I feel really proud of being a part of this historical event, especially setting a good example for people and showing them that anything is possible once they set their goal and focus on it,” he added.
Nuaimi is part of a stacked card that will also feature reigning WBC International super-fly titleholder Aliu Bamidele Lasisi, former world champion TJ Doheny, Irishman Steve Collins Jr and Dubai-based Rohan Date, Aussie star Cesar Mateo Tapia, promising Indian welterweight Faizan Anwar and many more.
Nuaimi, who trains six days a week, also eyes representing the UAE at the Olympics.
“Being a professional boxer representing the UAE is a huge honour. It’s my dream to compete at the Olympics.”
Talking about the increasing impact of boxing in the UAE and Middle East, he said: “This sport has attracted a big following in the region in such a short period of time. It’s growing fast.”
Nuaimi is one of the UAE boxers who benefited from Ahmed A Seddiqi’s Round 10 boxing club.
MTK Global Mena region adviser Ahmed A Seddiqi said: “The development of boxing in Dubai is a huge source of inspiration for us. It shows we are definitely heading in the right direction. RotundaRumble3 is an excellent card of international stars both present and future,” he added.
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