Muaythai teenage sensation Muhammad Johan Ghazali reaching for the stars

BANGKOK (May 29): Despite his young age of just 16, Muay Thai exponent Muhammad Johan Ghazali Zulfikar is fueled by an ambitious dream – to attain the prestigious ONE Championship contract of US$100,000 (RM460,553) and secure the highly coveted championship belt.

Continuing his remarkable journey in the ONE Championship, Muhammad Johan or better known as ‘Jojo’ delivered another awe-inspiring performance in the ONE Championship on Friday.

The young Sarawakian fighter left the crowd spellbound as he unleashed a spectacular knockout blow, leaving his opponent, Tai Sor Jor Piek Uthai, 24, a two-time Lumpinee Stadium Muay Thai World Champion, stunned.

“My target is to get the ONE Championship contract of USD100,000 but my ultimate goal is to be ONE Championship champion,” he told Bernama.

Johan, who represents Rentap Muay Thai Club, also bagged 350,000 baht (RM46,000) for his second knockout in a row. In February, Johan stunned fans in his promotional debut where he took just 16 seconds to knockout his 18-year-old Thai opponent, Padetsuk Fairtex, in their flyweight clash.

“I feel that the ONE Championship belt is bound for me. I am the future,” he told the crowd at the Lumpinee Stadium after winning the fight.

Undeterred by the bleeding cut on his head and the persistent taunting from Tai, who provocatively stuck his tongue out, Johan’s punches continued to rain down with relentless force.

With a powerful left hook-right overhand combo, he delivered a devastating blow that left his opponent down and out.

“Aware of the bleeding cut, I was mindful that the referee could halt the fight at any moment. With that in mind, I exerted every ounce of my effort to secure a swift victory” he said.

On his ambition to secure the ONE Championship contract and belt, Johan spoke of the doubts of those who doubted his talents.

“Many years ago, people deemed my dream of competing in the ONE Championship as grandiose. That dream has become a reality.

“Now, I pursue new goals. I understand that skepticism may arise once again. Nevertheless, I am fully committed to giving my absolute best and proving those skeptics wrong,” he said.

He thanked his parents and coach Addy Singpayak for their unwavering support through the highs and lows of his journey in the last six years. — Bernama


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Muaythai teenage sensation Muhammad Johan Ghazali reaching for the stars