Kota Kinabalu : The inaugural D1 Fighting Championship (D1FC): The Rise of Rhino Warriors, held for three days and two nights closed today.
The championship held from Jan 30 to Feb 1, which was the first of its kind to be held in Malaysia, saw 170 fighters competing, comprising a majority of Sabahan nak muays and competitors from Perlis, Perak, Kedah, Penang, Johor, Sarawak and Kuala Lumpur.
In addition to local boxers, the event also welcomed 28 pro Muay Thai boxers from countries such as Thailand, Uzbekistan, Indonesia and Singapore. The event aimed at nurturing local talents in the sport of Muay Thai kickboxing also hoped to expose new talents to represent Sabah in the SUKMA 2016 Muay Thai event.
Sabahan fighters fought well and hard throughout the three-day tournament, winning most of the important bouts. Among local fighters who showed great potentials were Randell ‘the Slayer’ Kadayum (Kinabalu Fighters Martial Arts & Fitness), Mardeana ‘the Venomous’ Maulana (Dihnar Muay Gym) and outstanding fighter with disability, Sunny ‘the Silencer’ Sabornido.
The D1FC: The Rise of Rhino Warriors was fully sponsored by the DIHNAR Group Sdn Bhd, under the leadership of its CEO and Muay Thai enthusiast, Nazri Abdul Razak. The event was also supported by Boxxtomoi Asia, the Malaysian Muay Thai Association, Sabah Muay Thai Association, Ministry of Youths and Sports Sabah and the Sabah Tourism Board.
A grand sporting event that racked almost RM2 millions of overall expenses, D1FC hoped to be a pioneer of sports tourism in Sabah.
“We have recently had the Sabah Masters golf tournament held, which is an excellent sports tourism event,” said DIHNAR Group CEO, Nazri Abdul Razak,adding that there was no reason why Muay Thai could not be incorporated as another local sports tourism event, which will showcase Sabah to the rest of the world.
With the success of D1FC, Muay Thai associations in Borneo (Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan FT) have agreed to organize another Muay Thai event in Borneo, dubbed the Borneo Cup. This championship event will be open for nak muays across the island of Borneo — Sabah, Sarawak, Labuan FT, Brunei Darussalam and Pontianak.-Sayangsabah.