As long as a Filipino fighter is on the card, every country Brave Combat Federation goes to becomes a home country for the Filipino fighter. One example was the fight between Hamza “The Pride of Bahrain” Kooheji, 26, of Bahrain and Jeremy “The Juggernaut” Pacatiw, 22, of the Philippines at “Brave 2: Dynasty” at the Khalifa Sports City Arena in Isa Town, Bahrain on December 2, 2016.
The Filipinos in the crowd did not make Pacatiw feel like he was fighting in a foreign land. Kooheji, aside from being the hometown hero, is a protege of Brave CF president Mohammed Shahid but that did not help either.
“He was my first student that I made a fighter out of,” Shahid said of Kooheji. “So, I’ve been to all sides of sports, you know, coaching, management, promotion, fighting myself, gyms, all that stuff. It’s a fun process but there’s a lot of things to change in the sport.”
In a recent interview with Shahid, he shared how amazed he was by the passion Filipinos show in Brave CF events, which was evident at “Brave 2: Dynasty.” At the time, he was with Brave CF founder His Highness Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa.
“I was sitting there with His Highness, and the media came to me and said, ‘Next fight is Bahrain vs the Philippines. What do you have to say?'” Shahid told me. “I said, ‘I don’t think we’re fighting in Bahrain. I don’t think Hamza had the advantage of fighting at home. This is not a home fight. Yeah, this is not a home fight.’ They (the Filipino fans) were screaming louder. It was unbelievable.”
“Brave 2: Dynasty” marked Pacatiw’s Brave CF debut. He lost to Kooheji via unanimous decision.
On March 15, 2019, Pacatiw will have his eighth bout in Brave CF at “Brave 22: Storm of Warriors” at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines. He will face promotional debutante Mark “The Ruthless” Alcoba, 27, of the Philippines.
“I can’t wait what happens in the Philippines,” Shahid said of “Brave 22: Storm of Warriors,” which is Brave CF’s first event in the Philippines. “It’s gonna be fun. I’m so excited for this. Hope everybody comes, show up there and support your fighters. I’m sure it’s a tough fight.”
Watch my complete interview with Shahid here: