Pakistan’s first-ever female mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Anita Karim unanimously won the fight against her Australian opponent under the banner of Fairtex Fight Promotion at Lumpinee Stadium, Bangkok.
According to media reports, the 25-year-old fighter from Hunza beat Uyen Ha in all three rounds of the bantamweight fight.
Anita’s proud brother Uloomi Karim took to social media to share his sister’s unique achievement. He said that his sister is the only Pakistani martial arts fighter who has fought at the prestigious Lumpinee Stadium.
@karimanitamma getting another W after putting on a clinic today at Fairtex Fight Promotion in Bangkok, Thailand.
P.s. Anita is the only female Pakistani (and one of the VERY FEW women in the WORLD) to have fought at the world famous Lumpinee Stadium!
— Uloomi Karim (@uloomi) June 11, 2022
“Anita Karim getting another W after putting on a clinic today at Fairtex Fight Promotion in Bangkok, Thailand. P.s. Anita is the only female Pakistani (and one of the VERY FEW women in the WORLD) to have fought at the world-famous Lumpinee Stadium!,” he wrote.
“Another one, Alhumdulillah All praises to the Almighty and a big thank you to everyone who showed love and support. Huge shoutout to my team @fairtexofficial for the knowledge and for pushing me every single day to get better! #teamfightfortress #anitakarim,” Anita Karim wrote on her Twitter handle with a video clip of her fight.
Last year while talking to The Express Tribune, Anita expressed how proud she was to be the country’s only woman MMA fighter.
“It is quite usual, to be honest. I belong to a family of Taekwondo black belt holders and to an area where the women do all the toughest work. The bodies of the women in our region are trained to do hard work. From an early age, we carry a lot of load on our backs and climb up the hills. A woman carries around 20 to 30 kilogrammes of wood, crop and other necessities for many kilometres. This makes our muscles adapted to hard work,” she said.
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Anita Karim rose to fame after defeating Indonesian opponent Gita Suharsono in One Warrior Series (OWS) back in 2019. She is also known as the ‘arm collector’.
Anita joined MMA when she was 20-year-old. She moved to Islamabad to join her brother’s academy and aimed to become the first professional women MMA fighter in Pakistan. It only took Anita two months to get her grip on the sport and make it to the international ring.
Ehtisham, while talking to The Express Tribune, said that Anita was tough since the beginning. “When we brought her to the gym, she passed all the tests and was comfortable with all the techniques other male fighters learn,” he said. “Since the beginning, she had a spark in her and that is why we decided to train her for professional MMA fights.”
According to Anita, it is not tough to pursue MMA full time, but the real challenge is social pressure. “The time I decided to go for MMA, I called up my father and told him that I am going to cut my hair and take a break from studies to train for MMA fights. My mother and father were reluctant to allow me, but when they saw the passion I had for MMA, they relented,” she said. “The real hurdle began after that.”
“The time I cut my hair and dedicated myself completely to the MMA, people back home started talking about how I’m not doing the type of work that ‘normal’ women do. They criticised me a lot on my appearance and [for] the path that I took. Unfortunately, this is why many female fighters give up; just because they face pressure from the society. I was lucky that I had a supportive brother, and he asked me to ignore everything and just focus on my training and ambition.”