Bulgarian Government Supports National MMA Federation

[spb_text_block pb_margin_bottom=”no” pb_border_bottom=”no” width=”1/1″ el_position=”first last”] Picture: BMMAF President Stanislav Nedkov (left) shaking hands with Sports Minister Krasen Kralev (right). In an interview with Blitz.bg, Stanislav Nedkov – retired UFC veteran and President of the Bulgarian MMA Federation (BMMAF) – discussed the recent and vast accomplishments of the Bulgarian MMA Federation, which includes an official sanctioning license from the Bulgarian Ministry of Sports. This historic achievement will aid the BMMAF’s mission to limit unsanctioned bouts and continue its mapping and registration of participants. In addition, Nedkov explains that recognition and support from Sports Minister Krasen Kralev has seen the National Amateur Team provided with funding ahead of the 2016 IMMAF World Championships in Las Vegas. The feature explains that Nedkov has served as President of the Bulgarian MMA Federation since the beginning of 2013. In the opinion of Minister Kralev, the BMMAF is sport’s governing body undergoing the most impressive development within the country. Under Nedkov’s leadership the number of registered MMA clubs in Bulgaria has risen from 10 to 39. On April 22-23 in Plovdiv, the country’s second largest city, the BMMAF will oversee National Team Qualifiers for the 2016 IMMAF World Championships . 2016 will also see the Bulgarian National Team compete at the Balkan Championships in May. See below for full interview translation: Mr. Nedkov, what do you expect of the National Championships of MMA, which will be held in Plovdiv? “This month, on April 22-23 in Plovdiv, the National Championships for amateurs and professionals will take place. It will be for all ages and also will serve as a qualification event for the (IMMAF) World Championships in Las Vegas, for men and women. All the winners from the National Championship will have the right to attend the World Championships. We give our gratitude to Mr. Kralev for the opportunity to travel and participate in the World Championships, because we know that Las Vegas is very far from here and this trip is to incur many expenses.” How well will our athletes represent our country at the World Championships? “At the beginning of May, after the National Championships, we will attend the Balkan Championships in the Turkish town of Alanya. This competition forms part of the preperation for the World Championships. At the beginning of June we will organise a two-week preperation camp, which will be attended by a competetior from UFC, who will participate in the training of our national fighters.  He will contribute to the improvement of their skills and technique. At the 2015 World Championships Tencho Karaenev won a silver medal. This year, I hope that we will be more successful and win world titles, following us securing two European titles (at the 2015 IMMAF European Open).” Tell us more about National Championships. How many clubs will be attending? “36 clubs and over 600 competitors have applied. The interest is very high. All the time I see hard working athletes.” You told us before in an interview that many people want to organise illegal fights and not to wait for permission from the BMMAF. How do you manage to cope with this situation? “The law says that only organizations who have a license from the Ministry of Sports have the right to organise these kinds of events. Myself and my crew from the BMMAF Board wanted to make reforms in this area. As we all know, the people who have organised illegal fights for more than 10 years are not pleased with the reforms we want to make. These illegal fights threaten the health of the competitors. We will not tolerate those who try to smear our reputation.” One of your main goals when you became the head of the Bulgarian Federation of MMA was to bring in new safety rules. Have successful have you been? “Last year our officials were trained by an official from the IMMAF. They passed theoritical and practical exams and have justified their qualification over the past year during which time no competitor was injured. In MMA the role of officials is very important, because there are many physical aspects.” What is the right strategy to attract youth to MMA? “This is one of the main purposes of the Federation, to attract young people as much as we can. We have halls in almost every city in the country and we want to give youths the opportunity to train. Not every one of them will become world champion, but every young person who trains  will certainly be saved from the dark side of the street.” For more information on the Bulgarian MMA Federation visit bmmaf.bg Written by IMMAF.org lead writer and website manager, Jorden Curran [/spb_text_block]

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