Dubai is slowly becoming a destination for Filipino boxers in this time of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Two Filipinos are entered in a boxing promotion dubbed “Countdown to the Middle East Crown” featuring a horde of international fighters set on Sunday, Sept. 12, at the At La Perle Al Habtoor City.
The fight card is the second of a 10-event series organized by DJMC Events that aims to popularize boxing in this city in the United Arab Emirates.
Featured fighters come from the USA, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Philippines, Colombia, Thailand, Brazil, Argentina, Cuba and Azerbajian.
The large Filipino community will definitely cheer for KJ Natuplag of the Philippines as he takes on Colombian Argel Berrio Zuniga in an 8-round featherweight bout while another Filipino, Murphy De Gay, tests the mettle of Mostafa Elhamy of Egypt in a four-round featherweight fight.
Boxing events in the Philippines and other parts of Asia have become scarce due to restriction brought about by the pandemic.
Australian Garry Connolly, who has Filipina boxers under his wings, acknowledged the growing interest for boxing in Dubai even as he advised up-and-coming promoters to come up with better marketing and business plans to become successful.
He believes that they should look at the large Filipino community in Dubai as one of the focus markets.
“The focus needs to be on the 1 million Filipinos in UAE, get them to come to shows. Once you get a thousand plus attending then everyone starts to notice.”
The DJMC event on Sunday will have two major title fights featuring Sachin Dekwal of India versus Muhammad Bibal from Pakistan for the World Boxing Association Super Welterweight East Asia title.
Women power will also be on spotlight in the exciting 10-round women’s battle between Urvashi Singh of India and Casey Morton of the United States for the WBO Intercontinental women’s crown.
The promoter promised to bring more Filipino boxers for the next fight card of the series.