Pro MMA fighter Anita Karim is blazing a trail as the first female professional MMA fighter from Pakistan.
In a place where women are not encouraged to fight, one woman is going against the grain and became a professional fighter. Anita Karim is that woman, she has now had five professional fights and isn’t slowing down. Karim most recently defeated Australia’s Uyen Ha in Bangkok at Fairtex Fight: Domination this past weekend. This was the third win of her pro career.
Karim is 25 years old and was born in Karimabad, Hunza Valley, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan. Because of the fight path she has chosen is not fully accepted in Pakistan, Karim, along with her brother/coach Ali Sultan, took her training to Thailand for the last seven months.
“Anita started training for MMA at the end of 2016,” Sultan told dailypakistan.com. “After about a year, she went for her first international fight. MMA is a very hard game and there was no female athlete from Pakistan in this field. That is why we decided to take this step to prepare her to represent the country.”
Sultan expressed in the interview that Karim and her family faced some criticism due to the fact that she is the first woman competing in mixed martial arts. Despite the disapproval, Karim is looking to pave the way for other women to follow her path and hopes to inspire the next generation of female athletes from Pakistan.
Following the win on June 11, she was publically congratulated by the former governor of Gilgit-Baltistan, Raja Jalal Hussain Maqpoon. This public show of admiration could be a turning point for Karim and other women looking to make their way in professional sports.
You can check out footage of Anita Karim’s latest victory below!