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MMA

Meet Arjan Bhullar – First Indian origin fighter to win a major MMA world title

Indian origin Mixed Martial Art (MMA) fighter Arjan Bhullar lifted the ONE Championship heavyweight title defeating Brendon Vera at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

Arjan Bhullar
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Arjan Bhullar

By

Abhijit Nair

Published: 16 May 2021 6:46 AM GMT

Indian origin Mixed Martial Art (MMA) fighter Arjan Bhullar lifted the ONE Championship heavyweight title defeating Brendon Vera at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

The first-ever Indian origin fighter to win a major MMA world title, Arjan Bhullar came out all guns blazing in the second round to defeat five-time heavyweight champion, Brendon Vera.

Beginnings

Born in the city of Vancouver in Canada, Arjan Bhullar started wrestling at a young age. He represented the Simon Fraser University which was recognised by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) during his college days.

Bhullar, soon, made it to the Canadian National team and won a gold in Men's 120kg Freestyle at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in 2010 and represented the country at the 2012 London Games.

Besides, he had also won a bronze medal at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro and was the Canadian National Champion for five consecutive years from 2008 to 2012 in wrestling.

Entering MMA


Arjan Bhullar at One Championship

Arjan Bhullar first tried his hand at amateur MMA in August 2014, before turning into a professional MMA fighter later in the same year. He competed in Canada for some time and won the Battlefield Fight League (BFL) in the year 2015, and then went on to defend his title twice. Bhullar signed with the America based MMA company, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in the year 2017, and became the first ever Indian origin player to win a UFC 215 bout when he defeated Luis Enrigue Barbosa de Oliveira in his debut fight by an unanimous decision.

World Champion

After a successful stint with the UFC, Bhullar signed with the Singapore-based MMA league ONE Championship in the year 2019. He defeated Mauro Cerilli with a unanimous decision in his first-ever fight in ONE Championship.

Arjan Bhullar then challenged the five-time ONE Heavyweight World Champion, Brendon Vera for the World Title and defeated him by a Technical Knock Out (TKO) in the second round to become the first-ever Indian origin fighter to win a major MMA world title.



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