Kickboxer wins silver medal for Canada
Mostafa Sabeti’s silver medal win at the World Kickboxing Association Championships in Germany last month might as well have been pure gold.
It’s his status as a new Canadian that has him the most delighted.
“I’m proud to be a part of Team Canada. It feels so good and so great,” the White Rock resident said.
Sabeti became a Canadian citizen on June 30, after a lengthy and complicated application process.
A former world champion whose Iranian passport caused him to miss out on several fighting opportunities, the 30-year-old is fighting hard to regain his former championship standing.
The tournament in Germany was another step in putting him back on top.
Sabeti competed in the 90-kilogram weight class defeating top kickboxers from around the world to reach the final.
A quarter-final victory against a Ghananese fighter gave him a spot in the semifinal. In the final match qualifier, Sabeti delivered a first-round KO high-kick on a Ukrainian opponent to put himself in the championship.
Facing a former world champ from the Czech Republic, Sabeti came close to claiming gold. But a dislocated shoulder stopped him short.
He was forced to call the match in the last second of the second round.
“If I didn’t have the injury I could have beat him. It was very close on points,” Sabeti said.
The injury has taken him out of competition and put a damper on his ambitions, but not his spirit.
The people around him provide Sabeti with support. His team includes his wife Solmaz, local equipment and financial sponsors, doctors and an oral surgeon.
“They are a very big part of my success. If these guys didn’t help me I wouldn’t be here,” he said. “They do an amazing job for me.”
Sabeti is hoping surgery on his shoulder will have him competing again in 2012 at the World Championships in Florida and put him back into championship contention.
He already won gold at the World Kickboxing Association Championships in Montreal in June and now has a silver medal from Germany. Being a part of Team Canada has been nothing less than sterling.