London: A new representative of the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation in Israel held its official press launch last week.
The Israeli MMA Federation (ISR-MMAF) boasts an impressive leadership team headed by businessman Gilad Har Oz as chairman; MMA coach and former competitor Ido Pariente as CEO; Itzik Rubinov as competition manager and digital director; and Ziv Hashi as CFO. Operations manager, Almog Maimon contributes a decade of sport development experience at the community level, working with local authorities, schools and at-risk youth groups. The board is joined by director Erez Elroy.
MMA’s fast growth in Israel and the need to govern and develop the sport has been identified by the ISR-MMAF, which aims to gain government recognition through an ambitious two-year plan to develop the nation’s best performing male and female athletes to represent Israel on IMMAF’s international championships platform.
Key goals outlined in the two-year plan are to:
- promote amateur MMA as a sport to represent Israel.
- increase the number of athletes and coaches.
- support amateur athletes.
- build a vast youth development infrastructure.
A national amateur championships circuit is set to include five events per year, with ISR-MMAF committed to welcoming all Israeli MMA clubs to align with the organisation. The group boasts a proven track record with Itsik Rubinov having previously managed the Israeli BJJ league.
IMMAF President Kerrith Brown said: “We are delighted to welcome Israel to the ever-expanding list of IMMAF Members. ISR-MMAF’s leadership team includes business experts, former elite level MMA competitors and educators. They all share IMMAF’s vision of creating the best environment for both competitive and recreational athletes with a particular focus on youth. We look forward to working closely with ISR-MMAF.”