Reigning Brave Combat Federation Lightweight Champion Abdul-Kareem “Pride of Palestine” Al-Selwady, 23, and Luan “Miau” Santiago, 24, of Brazil are two of the best young talents in the world of mixed martial arts today. The latter will challenge the former at “Brave 23.”
Both Abdul-Kareem and Santiago have been deemed as proof of Brave CF’s impact in MMA all over the world. The Jordanian defending champion was a Middle East champion before climbing up the step towards a world title while the Brazilian challenger was the recipient of the Brazil Fighter of The Year award in 2016 right before signing with the Bahrain-based MMA promotion.
On September 23, 2016, Al-Selwady started off his Brave CF career with a submission victory in the main event of “Brave 1: Beginning” at the Khalifa Sports City Arena in Isa Town, Bahrain. He went on to earn three more fights in the promotion, which gave him the opportunity to challenge then reigning Brave CF Lightweight Champion Lucas “Mineiro” Martins, 30, of Brazil at “Brave 18” at the Khalifa Sports City Arena on November 16, 2018.
In a dominant performance at “Brave 18,” Al-Selwady put away Martins in the first round, shocking the world of MMA. This firmly established the Jordanian fighter as one of the best fighters in the sport and now he is one of the most well-rounded MMA fighters.
Al-Selwady has found a home at Fortis MMA in Texas, United States after going through many different coaches in Jordan and in the U.S. early in his career. A competent striker with a great wrestling base, he is able to dominate his opponents exploring their weak areas and maintaining his discipline throughout the bout, never deviating from the gameplan.
On March 31, 2017, Al-Selwady knocked out grappler Erick “Indio Brabo” da Silva, 30, of Brazil at “Brave 9: The Kingdom of Champions” at the Khalifa Sports City Arena. On March 2, 2018, the Jordanian fighter used his wrestling skills to lay a beating in striker Charlie Leary, 35, of England at “Brave 10: The Kingdom Rises” at the Prince Hamzah Sporting Hall in Amman.
At “Brave 23,” Al-Selwady will need all of his multiple weapons when he takes on Santiago, who is one of the most unorthodox MMA strikers. The latter has made waves since his Brave CF debut and his first two fights with the promotion ended in incredible first-round KOs.
On April 13, 2018, Santiago lost to Martins when they competed for the Interim Brave CF Lightweight Championship title at “Brave 11” at the Mineirao Stadium’s Terrace in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil. On November 16, 2018, Santiago bounced back with a dominant performance against Djamil “Dynamite” Chan, 28, of the Netherlands, winning a unanimous decision to position himself as the number one contender for Al-Selwady’s belt.
While Santiago has been recognized as one of the best strikers coming out of Brazil, he is also an accomplished Jiu-Jitsu practitioner. He trains in one of the best MMA gyms in the country, CM System, with legendary coach Cristiano Marcello.
Meanwhile, here is a clip from Brave CF: