Hayder Hassan: “Kumite 1 League Has Been Amazing”

Kumite 1 League Hayder Hassan
Credit: Jeff Sherwood/Sherdog.com

Hayder Hassan had an impressive debut in Kumite 1 League’s first event yesterday, and we spoke to him about his experience.

On September 29, 2018, Kumite 1 League held its very first event. The inaugural event, which was attended by Mike Tyson, saw Team India take on Team UAE. In the third bout of the evening, Hayder Hassan from team UAE took on team India’s Hemant Wadekar. The two welterweights locked horns in the NSCI Dome and managed to create the most explosive crowd reaction of the night. Hayder Hassan stopped Wadekar in the very first minute of the very first round. By doing so he improved his record to 8-4.

What makes the win even more impressive is that Wadekar was a last minute replacement so Hassan wasn’t even aware of his opponent change before coming to India. After the fight, Hassan took some time to answer questions about the last-minute replacement, his future and more.

Paarth Pande: How has your experience in India been so far?

Hayder Hassan: My first experience has been beautiful. This is my first time here in India, in Mumbai. I am super impressed with the culture. I am super impressed with the people. Feels like an extension of my family.

PP: How was working with Kumite 1 League?

HH: Kumite 1 League has been amazing. This is the first time we have half of a cage and half with rope. It’s been amazing. We had Mike Tyson, the Sheikh, and AIMMAF. Everyone was amazing, Taj Lands was fantastic. I’ve been blown away. Extremely happy.

PP: Your opponent was changed a week before the fight. How did it affect you?

HH: My opponent changed days before the fight. I come from The Ultimate Fighter, so the change of opponent isn’t something new. I knew as long as I did what made me special it didn’t matter whom I fought.

PP: Your fight ended in the very first round. Was it something you planned or was it in the spur-of-the-moment?

HH: My game plan is always put pressure. Especially against wrestlers. My plan is to get into their face and land hard shots. They panic and then they shoot. It starts to affect their gas. My game plan was to stay composed and make him burn energy. He panicked, he opened up my knee to his face. That was the end of the fight.

PP: Would you want to compete in the Kumite 1 League again?

HH: I would love to come back to Kumite. It was an honor to be here. Like I said this is an extension of my family. So I would be more than happy to come back. I hope they have me back.