Another chapter of the Middle Eastern event Desert Force was held in Jordan this Friday, with Brazil’s Jorge “Michelan” Bezerra taking on tough Dutchman Djamil Chan. Michelan put on a Jiu-Jitsu clinic when he pulled guard, swept and finished his opponent with a tight armbar.
“I was called on at the last minute to substitute Pedro Galiza, who got injured while in Brasilia, and I went for it,” said the Léo Vieira student already with 20 MMA fights under his belt.
The objective behind Desert Force is to scout new MMA heroes for the populations of Arab countries and their descendents. This latest event showed clear signs the promoters are on the right path, as the fights were high level, not to mention dramatic.
The most heavily anticipated fight of the night was between Jordan’s Hashem Arkhagha and Egypt’s Mahmoud Salama. The favoritism enjoyed by the Jordanian almost fell by the wayside at the hands of the Egyptian athlete. However, early in the second round Hashem scored a takedown, moved to mount and finished up with an armbar, to then rush to the arms of the delirious fans.
Another Brazilian who has been carving out a place for himself in the Middle Eastern MMA scene is Gabriel Tayeh, a brown belt from Sul Jiu-Jitsu of Palestinian parentage, who faced the Frenchman of Tunisian origins Bechir Majri. Gabriel dominated the first round by taking Bechir down repeatedly, but the Tunisian was up to speed with his defenses and landed a spot-on knee as the Brazilian was shooting for a takedown, causing the referee to step in.
And there are two more Arabs who put in solid appearances and are ready to be launched into the international scenes are now the light heavyweight finalists: Syria’s Khalid Walid, and Tunisia-Holland transplant Sami Antar.
Desert Force Championship
Amman, Jordan Ortodox Club, Amman, Jordan
March 30, 2012
Haider Rasheed (Jordan) defeated. Bilel Missaoui (Lebanon) via decision – 70kg (lightweight)
Mohamad Arti (Kuwait) defeated Mahmoud Saeed (Egypt) via submission – 70kg (lightweight)
Ibrahim Elmgharbel (Lebanon) defeated via technical knockout Ammar Tchalabi (Saudi Arabia) – 77kg (welterweight)
Bechir Majri (Tunisia) knocked out Gabriel Tayeh(Palestine) – 77kg (welterweight)
Ibrahim Sawi (Egypt) knocked out Mohamad Abu Naim (Palestine) – 84kg (middleweight)
Hashem Arkhagha (Jordan) subbed Mahmoud Salama (Egypt) – 84kg (middleweight)
Khalid Walid (Syria) TKOd Mahmoud El Sayed (Egypt) – 93kg (light heavyweight)
Sami Antar (Tunisia) subbed Mohamad Abdelazim (Egypt) – 93kg (light heavyweight)
Jorge Bezerra (Brazil) subbed Djamil Chan (Holland) – 84kg (middleweight)