SRINAGAR: Trained by the famous Khali, Jammu and Kashmir’s first professional wrestler, Arif Saleem Bohru, is confident of his chances in the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) tryouts scheduled to be held this year in India.
Bohru, 24, is popularly known as Badshah Khan. He is a native of Neel, Banihal, in district Ramban.
“I am hopeful of getting selected. Quite a few professional wrestlers from the CWE have made it to the WWE,” he said.
The CWE, or Continental Wrestling Entertainment, Arif entered in 2018 for his first fight. “The Great Khali” was impressed and gave him the name ‘Badshah Khan’.
At 6-foot 2-inch, Bohru is currently being trained by the famous WWE superstar Khali at his wrestling academy in Jalandhar, Punjab.
Bohru said lack of prospects and infrastructure forced him to go outside J&K.
He said he had fought almost 150 fights at the CWE, Asian Wrestling Entertainment (AWE), and Wrestle Square, of which he won “80-85 percent.”
He said his fight against Singham Dubey from Andaman & Nicobar was his most memorable so far.
Bohru said it was his father, who is a Sub-Inspector in paramilitary forces, who inspired him to become a wrestler by telling him stories of the Great Khali’s struggle, hard work and success.
“From my childhood I was interested in wrestling. As a kid I used to watch wrestling on TV all the time,” he said.
About his training schedule, Bohru said he trains six hours daily and there is no rest day.
Bohru is currently among the top five pro-wrestlers of India. He said he wants to make Jammu and Kashmir proud and be counted among the top WWE professional wrestlers of the world.