Bahrain’s Hamza Kooheji is gearing up for the biggest fight of his career when he takes on Canada’s Brad Katona in the main event of BRAVE CF 57 on March 11 inside the Khalifa Sports City Arena in Isa Town, Bahrain.
The two men will battle it out for the vacant BRAVE CF bantamweight title. If Kooheji wins, he will become the first Bahrain-born combat sports champion, a massive achievement for the 29-year-old.
‘I’m excited and motivated for this fight,” Kooheji said, speaking to LowkickMMA.
“He’s tough, but I’m tougher. The camp was the hardest camp I have had in the last ten years. If you watch my fights, you will notice that I am a better fighter with every fight. Even when I’m not fighting, I’m still training and looking for improvements.”
Kooheji first competed for BRAVE CF at the promotion’s inaugural show back in 2016, where he scored a second-round submission victory over Egypt’s Mohamed Mashaly. Since then, he has watched as the Bahrain-based promotion has gone from strength to strength, breaking new ground for MMA by staging shows in countries where other MMA promotions do not venture and bringing in an influx of talented fighters.
“BRAVE CF has evolved a lot since the beginning, the level of fighters here are really high, and they are really good fighters; everyone who knows about MMA knows about BRAVE Combat Federation, ” he said.
Kooheji has built an 8-1 record under the BRAVE CF banner and comes into this fight riding a four-fight winning streak, with a victory over Welshman Aidan James at BRAVE CF 42 earning him this week’s title shot. The KHK MMA fighter is well aware of Katona’s pedigree and is looking forward to testing himself against the season 27 winner of The Ultimate Fighter.
“I have always been attached to fighting. So to get to fight professionally is a life I would’ve always chosen. I don’t like an easy life; I always look for tough roads [in order] to build myself.”
If Kooheji can get his raised on Friday against Katona, it would be a triumph for both him and his team and see his name permanently etched into the history books of Bahrain sport. The pressure is immense but then so is the reward.