Rising MMA star Muhammad Mokaev returns this week when he takes on England’s Jamie Kelly in a bantamweight bout at BRAVE CF 43, which takes place in the Gulf State of Bahrain, on Thursday, October 1.

Mokaev, a junior IMMAF world champion, made his pro debut in August at BRAVE CF 37, where he defeated Northern Ireland’s, Glen McVeigh. The Russian-born fighter is regarded as one of the sports top prospects and recently inked a deal with Paradign Management, home to the likes of Conor McGregor and Israel Adesanya.

On Thursday, he will make his second trip to the BRAVE cage and is well aware that he will be facing his biggest test to date in Kelly. The 21-year-old Mancunian has a 3-0 pro record with all his wins coming via TKO in the opening round.

Mokaev, who arrived in the UK as a refugee when he was aged 12, from Dagestan, has fought on the same card as Kelly and predicts the fight will generate a lot of interest from the UK fans.

“In my fourth amateur fight, we fought on the same card. He was in the undercard, and I was fighting for the title,” Mokaev said when contacted by Lowkick MMA.

“He was fighting just to fight. He had some nice finishes in the amateur scene, and now he has three fights and three finishes as a professional. I think it’s a good matchup, interesting for the fans, especially UK fans and European fans. Two undefeated fighters and everyone wants to see me in a challenge, so this is for my fans. “

When he decided to turn pro, Mokaev turned down offers from promotions such as ONE and Bellator to go with BRAVE CF. He credits his close relationship with BRAVE’s founder as one of the main reasons he signed with the Bahrain based promotion.

“My loyalty to Shaikh Khaled made me sign for BRAVE CF. I’ve competed under IMMAF for a long time, and I’ve been watching BRAVE CF since 2016. So I’ve been on their radar, and I grew up under BRAVE CF’s eyes. So my relationship is different from other organizations.”

Mokaev aims to compete in BRAVE’s flyweight and bantamweight divisions and has been keeping an eye of the BRAVE Flyweight Grand Prix, which began last week. He is already eyeing up a clash with former Bellator bantamweight champion, Zach Makovsky, who competes in the BRAVE flyweight division.

“Eventually, I will fight Zach Makovsky. And I believe it will happen next year.”

However, before he can begin planning out matchups with the likes of Makovsky, he first needs to get past a determined and focused Jamie Kelly.

Will you be watching BRAVE CF 43?