By Tenzin Dharpo
DHARAMSHALA, Nov. 30: Tibetan mixed martial artist and UFC fighter Sonam Dhargye (Ch. Su Madaerji)’s impressive 44-second knock out win on Sunday has propelled him to fly-weight division’s hot prospects. Dhargye’s fought Canadian fighter Malcom Gordon in a flyweight bout against at the UFC Fight Night event in Las Vegas.
The south-paw fighter known as the ‘Tibetan Eagle’ dominant win earned him a bonus of 50,000 $ and sent notice to the division’s front runners. “I am looking for a fight against a top ten contender for my next fight,” he said in his post-fight interview.
Dhargye’s powerful left handed punch landed smack on Gordon face, taking away his legs, followed by a flurry of punches that ended the fight early. His 44 seconds win is the third fastest in the UFC fly weight division. “Because I did a lot of ground training, I’m more confident and relaxed now when I’m in standing state,” he said. The Tibetan fighter aged just 24 is a well rounded fighter having trained in the Dagestani (Russian) wresting style of Sambo, although his strong suit remains striking. He trained at Enbo Fight Club in Chengdu, as well the UFC Performance Institute, Shanghai.
His MMA record is 13-4, with 9 first-round finishes. It was his third fight and the second win in the promotion, and the 11th KO in his fighting career. UFC President Dana White expressing delight in the up and coming fighter said, “I picked Su vs. Gordon and thought it was going to be a war but he (Sonam Dhargye) completely destroyed him.”
The Tibetan fighter is from Ngaba in eastern Tibet’s Amdo region. His entry song ‘Aku Pema’ is considered a praise to the Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He wore a traditional Tibetan Khatak (white scarf) in his run-up to the octagon. “All of the Tibetans from the region watch my fights and support me. My cause is that I want to bring honour for my people, team and the country,” he said earlier.
Tibetans across the globe lauded the Tibetan fighter’s win and expressed hopes of him representing a free Tibet. Ugyen Gyalpo wrote, “Sonam Dhargye aka the Tibetan Eagle entered the octagon to the tune of Aku Pema. And just as swiftly knocked out his opponent in less than sixty seconds. The power of the Tsampa Eater unleashed.”