19 December 2013 09:00 | By Tan Thiam Peng, xinmsn Sports editor
God’s will, says comeback kid Syafiq of slashing attack

Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA



Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
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  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© Tan Thiam Peng)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© Tan Thiam Peng)
  • Rebel FC headliner “The Slasher” calls the incident a blessing in disguise and seeks to be the face of Singapore MMA (© REBEL Fighting Championship)
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If not for his backstory, Syafiq Abdul Samad would just be another of the growing number of youngsters learning martial arts.

Then 15 and much smaller sized, Syafiq walked into an East Coast gym after getting hooked to The Contender Asia, the hit reality television show about muay thai.

“I wanted to be like them (the contestants),” he recalled. “I knew fighting was tough, but didn’t know it was really tough.”

Going under the wing of mentor Arvind Lalwani, Syafiq soon had his first taste of full-on sparring.

“This Chinese skinny boy looked harmless, and I thought, ‘I can beat this guy up’.

“Then I got beat up all over.

“I looked in the mirror, my face was all bloody. I thought, if this guy I cannot beat, I want to become a fighter? I can dream on.”

A lot of people would quit at this point, when the brutality of combat sports hits them.

That day, Lalwani, who now heads Juggernaut Fight Club, saw something special and knew he had a gem on his hands.

Click on for the full story

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