There are very few fighters in Full Contact Kickboxing that have managed to capture the attention of the whole fight community, across all the different ring sport disciplines from kickboxing to the wider fighting disciplines. It would appear that there is another British golden nugget on the scene, a young man from Birmingham whose style in the ring inspires all those who love their combatants wiry, skilful, evasive and elusive to eulogy.
Qasim ‘The Dream’ Nisar is that man. Or should I say man/boy, as we are talking about an 18 year old here. “Qasim is the future of the sport” is a sentiment heard often in the full contact kickboxing world; if he’s got the whole weight of an entire sport on his shoulders, you certainly wouldn’t know it by his outwardly relaxed and confident demeanor.
As I approach our meeting point outside the studio in central Birmingham, the city that Qasim calls home, I spot two figures lurking in the shadows. Qasim and his coach, Neil Kelly, a successful former fighter in his own right, are already waiting for me. At first glance it is obvious they’re in the fight game. Neil is dressed in his full fight sport trainer attire; tracksuit bottoms, trainers and an association hoodie. Qasim is sporting one of those modern, street-style, boxing inspired tracksuits with a twist; a part combatant, part gangsta rapper feel to it. His beanie hat completes the 100% fighter look; and if anyone was in doubt, the ten (yes ten!) belts under his arm gave the game away! I’ve met Qasim many times before and I can never quite get over just how young this teenage gladiator looks; “How have I been beaten by this kid?” is the question I imagine many of his opponents have asked themselves after a thorough going over by the ‘Dream Machine’. It is a question I suspect may flash through the minds of a fair few more in the near future…