The sport of MMA is still growing and continues to garner popularity even today in the country, with a number of fighters gaining popularity. However, one name which stands tall among even the best Indian fighters’ is that of bantamweight Kantharaj Shankar Agasa. Though in a country like India where people tend to be really passionate about sports, a much darker side of almost every sport can come to light.
MMA is no different. After Agasa, unfortunately, lost his last fight to an overweight opponent, his coach Vishal Seigell is bearing the brunt of it.
Coach Vishal Seigell, the Head Coach and Founder of the Koi Combat Academy has been on the receiving end of dreadful and deplorable hate-filled messages, death and rape threats towards him and the members of his family.
Agasa fought the Cameroonian Jaures Dea at UAE Warriors 5. However, Dea was found to be massively overweight at the weight-ins. Agasa still accepted the fight on the condition that he will receive $1500 from Dea’s purse. Though, later after the fight, he only received $1000 from Dea’s team.
Even after Agasa practically being cheated and still putting up a great performance, his coach Mr. Seigell received heinous texts from a person named ‘Sushil G’ on Facebook on July 11th, a few days removed from the fight. The man seemed to blame Vishal for Agasa’s defeat and went on to claim that Seigell is responsible for making the country look bad through his fighter’s defeat.
This man crossed all levels of decency when he sent Vishal messages on Facebook sending him death threats, and death and rape threats to his family members as well.
Below are the screenshots of the messages that were sent to Coach Seigell.
(Warning, the text contains vulgar and explicit language)
It should be noted that Coach Seigell isn’t just helping experienced Indian fighters like Agasa and Roshan Mainam Luwang improve, but he has also started a programme, along with Roshan, where he is training fighters, paying for their expenses from his own pocket, sheltering them in his own house in hopes of helping them make it in the sport.
His dedication and passion towards the development of sport in India cannot be questioned. Wins and losses are a part of it and some people should do well to understand that.
What is especially worrying is that the threat seems to have emanated from an inner circle, judging by the personal nature of the attack.
For Indian MMA to progress, untoward incidents like this have to be rooted out.