As a hardcore MMA fan, I always keep my schedule free on Monday nights, just to sit down, relax and watch desert force reality show, the academy. As much as I enjoy watching the show, yet I am the kind of person who sees the cup half empty, so I will lay down some issues I noticed throughout the episodes till yesterdays last quarter final fights.
What I really enjoyed most were the try out episodes! Those episodes had some awesome fights, the twist in these fights was that the fighters didn’t know whom they’ll be facing till it was time to step in the cage, and boy those guys came to fight!!! We saw it all, KO/TKO, Submissions, Decisions, Injuries, and a Disqualification. Yet!!! In my mind I was thinking this show is for amateurs to build themselves up as pro fighters, so it was really confusing to see some fighters who already fought at a professional level.
Fighters like Mohammad Ghorabi, Elias El Rayess, Sylvester Saba, Mohamed Ibrahim Mgharbel, Ali Alhadi, Mahmoud Saeed, and few other have already fought as Pro’s. Moving on came the moment of truth, picking the fighters in a special twist! The Genereal Manager of Desert Force, Mohammad Mirza, made the fighters pick their coaches which led both coaches to drop their jaws at this smart move. As the episodes went further, there was lack of focus on the fighters training, especially the ones whom had fights. I would have loved to see what the coaches have up their sleeves as trainers.
The first challenge was really awesome! Yet after that, the creativity was null, I mean pulling trucks, Come On!!! The Jerash challenge on the other hand was one of the most dangerous challenges Ive ever seen! A single miss footing on this platform and the fighter could have ended up on a stretcher and badly injured. But thankfully nothing happened. The refereeing had its downs too, some of the stoppages needed those extra few seconds before interfering, but for a first season, I think Yazan Ghattas did a fair enough job! It was obvious how much he evolved as a ref in the last two editions of Desert Force. One fighter in particular caught my FULL ATTENTION!! To tell you the truth I don’t consider him a fighter as there is no single element in that guy that makes him a fighter. Ali Ahmed showed no technical skills in the try outs as he just stormed his opponent in a street fight-like manner! He ended up in the house from a mistake his opponent did in that fight, an illegal up kick. Moving on, you can see he never trained with his team, and he was always injured. Funny thing was the arm sling he had was jumping from the right to the left arm in couple episode!!! It’s a miracle!!
Fight Day came up! And our man was downing cart wheels!!! wait!!! Didn’t you have injured elbows??? I guess we saw what kind of fighter he was when he faced the Iraqi Ahmad Sa’eb. After the ref stoppage, he had to find a way out, so yeah, lets fake another injury!!!
Now we come to the last fight, Bandar VS Ali, where the biting incident happened!! That was one of the stupidest things I witnessed in MMA, yet what happened after was even nastier than everything Ken Shamrock ever did when he went on a rant.
Hashem Arkhagha the coach of the blue team-with a real unprofessional move jumps over the fence and attacks the Saudi fighter! Thank God, this didn’t break into a big brawl, as everyone from both teams and the crew on ground stepped in to cool things down inside the cage. The whole thing was upsetting to the viewers, biting, coach interfering, chaos inside the cage, all should remember that this is a sport, not a jungle law fight. At the end, I really enjoyed the strong start of the show, but slowly the level started to drop. Hopefully the coming episodes can cover for that. As the semi final fights begin, we are all eager to know who the finalists will be at the next Desert Force event taking place in my beloved Dubai.