MOHAMMAD WASEEM THE MAN WITH A HUNDRED TITLES
He is a golden gloved fighter the only one of his type in Pakistan serving as a beacon of hope for all athletes in Pakistan. We met the boxer in Dubai while he filled us in on his journey and posed for our camera. Read on...
'I started boxing in the early school days, along with street fights. As you know, the most famous games in Balochistan and Quetta are boxing and football'
You recently won the WBA flyweight title, which is a great achievement for you so what is the next step for your career?
Next step is Final Eliminator IBF World Title on March 19, 2022.
What is one of the setbacks you faced in your journey that almost made you want to give up?
There were many obstacles with federation. Along with very limited resources and no proper gym facility. However, the motivation and passion kept me going on. This is a result of all the hard work Alhamdulillah.
Who is one person you look up to currently and why?
I look forward to how I prove everyone wrong by still continuing to have one of the best fights and shut the critics down by moving forward.
How did your passion for boxing actually start?
I started boxing in the early school days, along with street fights. As you know, the most famous games in Balochistan and Quetta are boxing and football. So I had developed a passion for boxing there and started training for it in gyms.
What setbacks did you face in your career in terms of support from Pakistani institutions?
Someone who supported me was my trainer Muhummad Tariq, he supported me a lot, my family especially my mother, that’s the reason I continued and kept moving forward.
‘This generation of people are only into cricket compared to the generation of the 1970s and 80s’
Why do you think there is a lack of support towards sport in Pakistan?
This generation of people are only into cricket compared to the generation of the 1970s and 80s. People are unaware of boxing and our legacy in boxing. That is why we face a lot of problems with sponsorships because the support for cricket is uncanny.
What do you think the government should or can do in order to support sports in Pakistan?
Pakistan Sports Boards and Pakistan Olympic and those athletes who are legends themselves like Jahangir Khan, should come forward and appoint themselves to promote their respective sports.
How do you think the public or youth can help in supporting sports in Pakistan?
Our youth can definitely play a major role in promoting boxing but first they should be encouraged to know boxing, I am pretty sure that not many people even know the basics of boxing. So first they should be motivated to like boxing.
What is your biggest motivation that keeps you going?
To be honest I love boxing, this is a very amazing discipline. My mother has supported me a lot in this. My wife and a lot of my people, my small boxing community and of course my personal drive of shutting the critics and haters down.
'I would love to pursue olympics and win medals for Pakistan, this is an opportunity which I think I missed'
What is one piece of advice you would give to anybody who is trying to become a professional athlete?
Never give up. Hard work, and never drop your aspiration to chase your own passions.
If you had a chance would you change anything about your past especially in relation to your career?
I would love to pursue olympics and win medals for Pakistan, this is an opportunity which I think I missed. Now if we blame the sports federation or yself, it doesn’t matter but definitely a chance missed.
‘Our youth can definitely play a major role in promoting boxing but first they should be encouraged to know boxing, I am pretty sure
INTERVIEW: UMAMAH ASIF BURNEY
PHOTOGRAPHY: ASIM CHEEMA
COORDINATION: YASIR MUSHTAQ
LOCATION: MTK STRONG MMA, DUBAI