The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, on Tuesday lauded Nigerian-born pugilist Kamarudeen Usman for retaining his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight belt against Jorge Masvidal.
Dare said, in a statement on Tuesday, that Usman’s win was not only inspiring, but a confirmation of the Nigerian never-say-die spirit.
“A big congratulations to Usman for making Nigeria proud by retaining his Ultimate Fighting Championship title against Jorge Masvidal.
“His tenacity, courage and consistency is typical of the Nigerian spirit of never giving up. He is not only a worthy champion, but a great Nigerian in whom we are all proud.
“Once again, he has shown that he is not just a patriot, but an embodiment of a great athlete who has projected the image of our dear country before the whole world positively.
“You are indeed a great Ambassador of Nigeria,” the minister said.
Usman retained his title via unanimous decision in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.
The fight was almost called off due to a disagreement over pay because Masvidal was named as a last minute replacement to earlier challenger Gilbert Burns who pulled out after he tested positive to COVID-19.
The feat is Usman’s 11th successful win in 3 title defence in the United Arab Emirate.
Usman earned 600,000 dollars appearance fee and 40,000 dollars as incentives, while his challenger got 500,000 dollars
The Nigerian Nightmare has won 16 of his last 17 fights, losing only to Jose Caseres in 2013. (NAN)